Highland Park is a suburban city located in Lake County, Illinois, and is a part of the Chicago metropolitan area. With a population of 30,177, the city is situated about 25 miles north of downtown Chicago. Highland Park is known for its scenic beauty, rich history, and vibrant cultural scene.
Highland Park has a rich history that dates back to the 19th century. In 1867, ten men purchased the land for $39,198.70 and became the original stockholders of the Highland Park Building Company. The city was officially established on March 11, 1869, with a population of just 500. It evolved from two settlements: St. John and Port Clinton. The city was named for its park-like setting at a lofty elevation relative to Lake Michigan. Highland Park was a “dry” community until November 1, 1900, meaning the sale of alcoholic drinks was prohibited.
Geography and Climate
The city spans an area of 12.2 square miles and features a 100-foot-high bluff running along 6 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline. The city experiences a typical Midwestern climate, with cold winters and warm summers.
Housing and Economy
The median home price in Highland Park is $675,000, with an average property tax of $19,913. The average county tax rate is 2.95%. The city’s zip codes are 60035 and 60037. The economy is diverse, with the international headquarters of Solo Cup Company previously located in Highland Park before relocating to neighboring Lake Forest in 2009.
Attractions and Landmarks
Highland Park is home to several attractions, including the Ravinia Festival, an open-air pavilion that hosts various concerts during the summer. The city also has several landmark structures listed in the National Register of Historic Places, including the Willits House by Frank Lloyd Wright. There are three public beaches: Rosewood Beach, Moraine Beach, and Park Avenue Beach, which also has a boating facility.
Government and Politics
Highland Park operates under a council-manager government. The city is considered a Democratic stronghold, giving Joe Biden more than 80% of its vote in the 2020 United States presidential election.
The city is served by North Shore School District 112, which operates an early childhood center, eight elementary schools, and two middle schools. Township High School District 113 operates Highland Park High School.
Highland Park is popular with professional athletes, as the Chicago Bears’ practice facility is in nearby Lake Forest. Several members of the championship Chicago Bulls of the 1990s also lived in Highland Park, including Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen.
Highland Park offers a blend of natural beauty, rich history, and modern amenities, making it a desirable place to live. Whether you’re interested in the arts, outdoor activities, or simply enjoying the scenic views, Highland Park has something for everyone.
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