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City of Chicago

  •   State: 
    Cook County
      County FIPS: 
    41°52′55″N 87°37′40″W
      Area total: 
    234.53 sq mi
      Area land: 
    227.73 sq mi (589.82 km²)
      Area water: 
    6.80 sq mi (17.62 km²)
    (mean) 597.18 ft (182.02 m)
    1780; Settled c. 1780; 243 years ago ( 1780 ); Incorporated (town) August 12, 1833; 190 years ago ( 1833-08-12 ); Incorporated (city) March 4, 1837; 186 years ago ( 1837-03-04 )
  •   Latitude: 
      Dman name cbsa: 
    Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI
    Eastern Standard Time (EST) UTC-5:00; Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) UTC-4:00
      ZIP codes: 

    Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    12,059.84 residents per square mile of area (4,656.33/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

Chicago was incorporated as a city in 1837 near a portage between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River watershed. It grew rapidly in the mid-19th century; by 1860, Chicago was the youngest U.S. city to exceed a population of 100,000. Chicago is an international hub for finance, culture, commerce, industry, education, technology, telecommunications, and transportation. It is home to several Fortune 500 companies, including Archer Daniels Midland, Conagra Brands, Exelon, JLL, Kraft Heinz, McDonald's, Mondelez International, Motorola Solutions, Sears, and United Airlines Holdings. The Chicago area has one of the highest gross domestic products (GDP) in the world, generating $689 billion in 2018. O'Hare International Airport is routinely ranked among the world's top six busiest airports according to tracked data by the Airports Council International. Chicago has professional sports teams in each of the major professional leagues, including two Major League Baseball teams. Chicago's culture includes the visual arts, literature, film, theater, comedy, food, dance (including modern dance and jazz troupes and the Joffrey Ballet), and music (particularly jazz, blues, soul, hip-hop, gospel, and electronic dance music, including house music). Chicago is also the location of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Landmarks in the city include Millennium Park, Navy Pier, the Magnificent Mile, the Art Institute of Chicago, Museum Campus, the Willis (Sears) Tower, Grant Park, the Museum of Science and Industry, and Lincoln Park Zoo.

Etymology and nicknames

Chicago is the primary city name, but also Bedford Park are acceptable city names or spellings, Clearing, Forest View, Stickney on the other hand no longer accepted or obsolete and are no longer used as a designation. The official name is City of Chicago. The name Chicago is derived from a French rendering of the indigenous Miami-Illinois word shikaakwa for a wild relative of the onion. The first known reference to the site of the current city of Chicago as "Checagou" was by Robert de LaSalle around 1679 in a memoir. Henri Joutel, in his journal of 1688, noted that the eponymous wild "garlic" grew abundantly in the area. The city has had several nicknames throughout its history, such as the Windy City, Chi-Town, Second City, and City of the Big Shoulders. It is also known as Chicago, Chicago, and Chicago, Illinois. The name Chicago was given to the city by the French explorer and cartographer Robert de laSalle in 1679. He wrote in his memoir: "The place called "Chicagou," which, according to what we were able to learn of it, has taken this name because of the quantity of garlic which grows in the forests in this region.... When we arrived at the said place... we found it to be a place called Chicagou... when we arrived there... it was a place which had a great quantity of Garlic" The city was named after the Allium tricoccum, known more commonly as "ramps" by botanists. It has also been known as the "Windy City," the "Second City" and the "Big Shoulders".


The first known non-indigenous permanent settler in Chicago was trader Jean Baptiste Point du Sable. The City of Chicago was incorporated on March 4, 1837, and for several decades was the world's fastest-growing city. Chicago's first railway, Galena and Chicago Union Railroad, and the Illinois and Michigan Canal opened in 1848. In 1900, the problem of sewage contamination was largely resolved when the city reversed the flow of the Chicago River so that the water flowed away from Lake Michigan rather than into it. In 1871, the Great Chicago Fire destroyed an area about 4 miles (6 km) wide, a large section of the city, including railroads and stockyards. During its rebuilding period, Chicago constructed the first skyscraper, using steel-keleton construction. The city grew significantly in size and population by incorporating many neighboring towns between 1851 and 1920, with the largest annexation happening in 1889, with five townships joining the city. The desire to join the Northwest Side of Chicago and Jefferson Township, which now makes up most of Chicago's Northwest Side, makes up Chicago's most desire to be part of the Northwest United States. The Chicago Board of Trade (established 1848) listed the first-ever standardized "exchange-traded" forward contracts, which were called futures contracts. In the 1850s, Chicago gained national political prominence as the home of Senator Stephen Douglas, the champion of the KansasNebraska Act and the "popular sovereignty" approach to the issue of the spread of slavery.


Chicago is located in northeastern Illinois on the southwestern shores of freshwater Lake Michigan. It is the principal city in the Chicago metropolitan area, situated in both the Midwestern United States and the Great Lakes region. The city rests on a continental divide at the site of the Chicago Portage, connecting the Mississippi River and Great Lakes watersheds. Two riversthe Chicago River in downtown and the Calumet River in the industrial far South Sideflow either entirely or partially through the city. The average land elevation is 579 ft (176.5 m) above sea level. While the Chicago Loop is the central business district, Chicago is also a city of neighborhoods. The North Side is the most-densely-populated residential section of the city, and many high-rises are located along the lakefront. There are 24 public beaches across 26 miles (42 km) of the waterfront. Lake Shore Drive runs adjacent to a large portion of Chicago's waterfront. In 2016, Chicago was ranked the sixth-most walkable large U.S. city in terms of large walkable areas. The Chicago Tribune coined the term "Chicagoland", which generally means the city and all its suburbs. It includes the city of Chicago, the rest of Cook County, and eight nearby Illinois counties: Lake, McHenry, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Grundy, Will and Kankakee, and three counties in Indiana: Lake, Porter and LaPorte. The South Side contains most of the facilities of the Port of Chicago.


When founded in 1833, fewer than 200 people had settled on what was then the American frontier. In the forty years from 1850 to 1890, the city's population grew from slightly under 30,000 to over 1 million. Chicago's population declined in the latter half of the 20th century, from over 3.6 million in 1950 down to under 2.7 million by 2010. In 2018, Chicago ranked seventh globally for the highest number of ultra-high-net-worth residents with roughly 3,300 residents worth more than $30 million. According to U.S. census estimates as of July 2019, Chicago's largest racial or ethnic group is non-Hispanic White at 32.8% of the population, Blacks at 30.1% and the Hispanic population at 29.0%. Chicago's South Side emerged as United States second-largest urban black concentration, following New York's Harlem. Chicago has the third-largest LGBT population in the United States. Since the 2013 legalization of same-sex marriage in Illinois, over 10,000Same-sex couples have wed in Cook County, a majority of them in Chicago. Chicago is the headquarters of several religious denominations, including the Evangelical Covenant Church and Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. It is one of the largest dioceses based on the population of members on the Fourth Presbyterian Church of America. The city is the fourth-most religious metropolis in the US, with Roman Catholicism the largest branch followed by Roman Catholicism and Jehovah's Witnesses.


Chicago has the third-largest gross metropolitan product in the United Statesabout $670.5 billion according to September 2017 estimates. Illinois is home to 66 Fortune 1000 companies, including those in Chicago. The city claims three Dow 30 companies: aerospace giant Boeing, McDonald's and Walgreens Boots Alliance. The Chicago metropolitan area recorded the greatest number of new or expanded corporate facilities in the U.S. for calendar year 2014. In 2009 Chicago placed ninth on the UBS list of the world's richest cities. Chicago has been influential through the Chicago school of economics, which fielded some 12 Nobel Prize winners. In 2017, Chicago exchanges traded 4.7 billion derivatives with a face value of over one quadrillion dollars. Chicago is also the site of a growing number of web startup companies like CareerBuilder, Orbitz, Basecamp, Groupon, Feedburner, Grubhub and NowSecure. Since the 2020 CO-19 pandemic, four large companies left the Chicago area, including Caterpillar, Boeing, Caterpillar and Tyson Foods. Three Fortune 500 companies left Chicago in 2022, leaving the city with 35, still second to New York City. In 2022, Kellogg's announced that the new spin-off of its snack business will move to the Chritzker's Chocolatier, which will be based in the Chicago suburb of Wrigleyville, Illinois. It is the first time that a Fortune 500 company has moved its headquarters to the city in more than 20 years.

Culture and contemporary life

Downtown is the center of Chicago's financial, cultural, governmental and commercial institutions. Over a third of the city population is concentrated in the lakefront neighborhoods from Rogers Park in the north to South Shore in the south. The River North Gallery District features the nation's largest concentration of contemporary art galleries outside of New York City. The city's distinctive accent, made famous by its use in classic films like The Blues Brothers and television programs like the Saturday Night Live skit "Bill Swerski's Superfans", is an advanced form of Inland Northern American English. The Chicago Pride Parade, held the last Sunday in June, is one of the world's largest with over a million people in attendance. Chicago offers five Broadway-style entertainment theaters: the Goodman Theatre, Cadillac Palace Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Victory Theater and Broadway Theater at Navy Pier. Chicago has a large Polish speaking population, which can be seen at the historic Gateway Theatre in Jefferson Park. Chicago is home to the Chicago Cubs, the Chicago Blackhawks, and the Chicago Bulls football team. It is the home of the University of Chicago, which is ranked one of world's top ten universities, and of the Chicago Bears, who play in the NFL's Soldier Field. It also hosts the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, a world-renowned chamber music group, and a number of professional sports teams, including the Chicago White Sox, Chicago Cubs and Chicago Blackhawks. The U.S. Air Force Reserve is based in Chicago and is based at the Chicago Auxiliary Air Force Base.


Chicago has the third most franchises in the four major North American sports leagues with five, behind the New York and Los Angeles Metropolitan Areas. The city has two Major League Baseball (MLB) teams: the Chicago Cubs of the National League and the Chicago White Sox of the American League. The Chicago Bulls of the NBA are one of the most recognized basketball teams in the world. Chicago Fire FC is a member of Major League Soccer (MLS) and plays at Soldier Field. The Sky is a professional basketball team playing in the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) The Chicago Marathon has been held each year except for 1987 when a half-marathon was run in its place. Chicago is one of eight cities in the U.S. to have won championships in all four major professional leagues and one of five cities to have done so in soccer, along with Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia and Washington. The Cubs are the oldest Major League baseball team to have never changed their city; they have played in Chicago since 1871, and continuously so since 1874 due to the Great Chicago Fire. The White Sox have played on the South Side continuously since 1901, with all three of their home fields throughout the years being within blocks of one another. They have won three World Series titles (1906, 1917, 2005) and six American League pennants, including the first in 1901. The Blackhawks have won six Stanley Cups, including in 2010, 2013, and 2015. During the 1990s, with Michael Jordan leading them, the Bulls won six NBA championships in eight seasons. They also boast the youngest player to win the NBA Most Valuable Player Award, Derrick Rose.

Parks and greenspace

When Chicago was incorporated in 1837, it chose the motto Urbs in Horto, a Latin phrase which means "City in a Garden" Today, the Chicago Park District consists of more than 570 parks with over 8,000 acres (3,200 ha) of municipal parkland. Lincoln Park, the largest of the city's parks, covers 1,200 acres (490 ha) and has over 20 million visitors each year. There are 31 sand beaches, a plethora of museums, two world-class conservatories, and 50 nature areas. The Cook County Forest Preserves, a network of open spaces containing forest, prairie, wetland, streams, and lakes, are set aside as natural areas. With berths for more than 6,000 boats, the Park District operates the nation's largest municipal harbor system. The Chicago Park Boulevard System Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2018. It includes nineteen boulevards, eight parks, and six squares, along twenty-six miles of interconnected streets. The park district also operates the Chicago Harbor System, which is the largest harbor system in the United States, with more than 5,000 berths. It is located on the Chicago River, which runs through the heart of the park district, and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city. There is a historic boulevard system, which was authorized by the Illinois legislature in 1869. The boulevard system continued intermittently until 1942.

Law and government

The mayor of Chicago is the chief executive, elected by general election for a term of four years, with no term limits. The City Council is the legislative branch and is made up of 50 aldermen, one elected from each ward in the city. Civil and criminal law cases are heard in the Cook County Circuit Court of the State of Illinois court system, or in the Northern District of Illinois, in the federal system. The citizens of Chicago have not elected a Republican mayor since 1927, when William Thompson was voted into office. All eight of the city's representatives are Democrats; only two Republicans have represented a significant portion of Chicago since 1973, for one term each. Chicago's crime rate in 2020 was 3,926 per 100,000 people. The city is home of former United States President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama; Barack Obama was formerly a state legislator representing Chicago and later a US senator. The Obamas' residence is located near the University of Chicago in Kenwood on theCity's south side. Chicago had a murder rate of 18.5 per 100, 000 residents in 2012, ranking 16th among US cities with 100,00 or more. This was higher than in New York City and Los Angeles, which have lower murder rates and lower total homicides. However, it was less than in many smaller American cities, including New Orleans, Newark, and Detroit, although the latter has fallen substantially in recent years. The 2015 year-end crime statistics showed there were 468 murders Chicago in 2015, a 12.5% increase as well as more than the year prior, compared with 2,900 shootings in 2013. In June 2017, the Chicago Police Department reported that the city experienced a 6279% increase in homicides from 2015 to 2016.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois = 6.8. These Air Quality index is based on annual reports from the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The number of ozone alert days is used as an indicator of air quality, as are the amounts of seven pollutants including particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, lead, and volatile organic chemicals. The Water Quality Index is 31. A measure of the quality of an area’s water supply as rated by the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The EPA has a complex method of measuring the watershed quality, using 15 indicators such as pollutants, turbidity, sediments, and toxic discharges. The Superfund Sites Index is 10. Higher is better (100=best). Based upon the number and impact of EPA Superfund pollution sites in the county, including spending on the cleanup efforts. The UV Index in Chicago = 3.6 and is a measure of an area's exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. This is most often a combination of sunny weather, altitude, and latitude. The UV Index has been defined by the WHO ( and is uniform worldwide.


The most recent city population of 2,746,388 individuals with a median age of 34.7 age the population dropped by -2.40% in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 12,059.84 residents per square mile of area (4,656.33/km²). There are average 2.67 people per household in the 1,037,069 households with an average household income of $45,844 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is 11.60% of the available work force and has dropped -4.37% over the most recent 12-month period and the projected change in job supply over the next decade based on migration patterns, economic growth, and other factors will increase by 19.66%. The number of physicians in Chicago per 100,000 population = 255.4.


The annual rainfall in Chicago = 35.9 inches and the annual snowfall = 27.5 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 124. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 189. 83 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 18.4 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 47, where higher values mean a more pleasant climate. The Comfort Index measure recognizes that humidity by itself isn't the problem. (Have you noticed nobody ever complains about the weather being 'cold and humid?) It's in the summertime that we notice the humidity the most, when it's hot and muggy. Our Comfort Index uses a combination of afternoon summer temperature and humidity to closely predict the effect that the humidity will have on people.

Median Home Cost

The percentage of housing units in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois which are owned by the occupant = 38.42%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 57 years with median home cost = $220,470 and home appreciation of -11.35%. This is the value of the years most recent home sales data. Its important to note that this is not the average (or arithmetic mean). The median home price is the middle value when you arrange all the sales prices of homes from lowest to highest. This is a better indicator than the average, because the median is not changed as much by a few unusually high or low values. The property tax rate of $16.10 shown here is the rate per $1,000 of home value. If for simplification for example the tax rate is $14.00 and the home value is $250,000, the property tax would be $14.00 x ($250,000/1000), or $3500. This is the 'effective' tax rate.


The local school district spends $4,528 per student. There are 20.2 students for each teacher in the school. 10904.63% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 15.93% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 10.35% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • Chicago's population in Cook County, Illinois of 1,698,575 residents in 1900 has increased 1,62-fold to 2,746,388 residents after 120 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 51.00% female residents and 49.00% male residents live in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois.

    As of 2020 in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois are married and the remaining 56.50% are single population.

  • 37.5 minutes is the average time that residents in Chicago require for a one-way commute to work. A long commute can have different effects on health. A Gallup poll in the US found that in terms of mental health, long haul commuters are up to 12 percent more likely to experience worry, and ten percent less likely to feel well rested. The Gallup poll also found that of people who commute 61­–90 minutes each day, a whopping one third complained of neck and back pain, compared to less than a quarter of people who only spend ten minutes getting to work.

    50.20% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 14.52% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 26.10% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 2.40% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, 38.42% are owner-occupied homes, another 49.34% are rented apartments, and the remaining 12.24% are vacant.

  • The 56.06% of the population in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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