In northeast Mexico is Linares City, which has an extensive agricultural area and many industrial activities. Near this city is the Cerro-Prieto Dam (~12 km NE direction); this drinking water reservoir captures the water of the Pablillo River catchment area and constitutes an important source of potable water for the metropolitan area of Monterrey, the largest urban center of this region. Groundwater sources in this area provide drinking water to Linares inhabitants. A hydrogeological and hydrochemical study was conducted on the shallow aquifers surrounding the urban centers (Linares and Hualahuises) to determine the evolution of the water quality between 1981 and 2009. The hydrochemistry was assessed upgradient and downgradient from the potential contamination sources in Linares city. Groundwater showed a chemical evolution from calcium-bicarbonate type to calcium–sodium-sulfate type. The water qualities in the downstream area after Linares are inferior compared to the upstream area before the city. Nitrate concentrations in groundwater increased significantly after 28 years indicating an important pollutant process in this period of time over the study area. The possible pollution sources could be the agricultural and farm activities, industrial development, landfills leachate, septic tanks and wastewater of municipal and domestic consumption. If the present scenario continues, an aquifer vulnerability assessment would be important for the sustainable water management.