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Arlington Heights, Illinois
Village of Arlington Heights, Illinois
Evergreen Avenue in Downtown Arlington Heights
Evergreen Avenue in Downtown Arlington Heights
Official seal of Arlington Heights, Illinois
City of Good Neighbors
Location in Cook County and the state of Illinois.
Location in Cook County and the state of Illinois.
Location of Illinois in the United States
Location of Illinois in the United States
Country  United States
State Illinois
Counties Cook
Township Wheeling
Incorporated 1887
 • Type Council-manager
 • Total 16.6 sq mi (43.1 km2)
 • Land 16.6 sq mi (43.0 km2)
 • Water 0.04 sq mi (0.1 km2)
700 ft (200 m)
 • Total 75,101
 • Density 4,513/sq mi (1,742.5/km2)
Standard of living
Time zone Central
ZIP code(s)
60004, 60005, and 60006 (PO BOX Only)
Area code(s) 847 and 224
Geocode 02154

Arlington Heights is a town in Cook County in the U.S. state of Illinois. A suburb of Chicago, it lies about 25 miles (40 km) northwest of the city's downtown. The population was 75,101 at the 2010 census. It is the most populous community in the United States that is incorporated as a "village", although it is not far ahead of its nearby Illinois neighboring villages of Schaumburg and Bolingbrook and adjacent Palatine.

Arlington Heights is known for Arlington Park Race Track, home of the Arlington Million, a Breeders' Cup qualifying event; it also hosted the Breeders' Cup Classic in 2002. The village is also home to the Arlington Heights Memorial Library, which has one of the largest collections in the state.


Arlington Heights lies mostly in the western part of Wheeling Township, with territory in adjacent Elk Grove and Palatine townships, in an area originally notable for the absence of groves and trees. The General Land Office began selling land here in 1835. In 1853, William Dunton, originally from Oswego, New York, persuaded the Illinois & Wisconsin Railroad to make a stop here, and laid out a town called Dunton. Dunton Avenue, named after William Dunton, is the village's base line that splits addresses east and west, with Campbell Street splitting north and south.

By 1850, the area had largely changed its ethnic composition, as many German farmers from Saxony had arrived during the 1840s. John Klehm might serve as an example; he was at first a potato farmer, supplying the Chicago market, and in 1856 began a nursery for cherry, apple, and pear trees, later moving into spruce, maple, and elm, and then flowers. By the late 1850s the area had become noted for its truck farms, sending dairy products as well as vegetables to Chicago on the railroad.

Banta, Nathaniel Moore House (Arlington Heights, IL) 02
The Nathaniel Moore House is on the National Register of Historic Places.

The little town at the depot slowly grew, acquiring a blacksmith, a cheese factory, a hardware store, and a hotel. It incorporated as Arlington Heights in 1887, when its population numbered about 1,000. Most were farmers, but they were joined by others who worked in Chicago, since Arlington Heights was an early commuter suburb.

Religious heritage

The town developed religious institutions that reflected the origins of its citizens. The first churches were Presbyterian (1856) and Methodist (1858), with St. Peter Lutheran Church, a German Lutheran church, following in 1860. Today, the village has many Roman Catholics, boasting three very large churches: St. James (founded 1902—now home to 4,600 registered families), St. Edna (2,800 registered families), and Our Lady of the Wayside (3,100 registered households), in addition to several large Lutheran churches, Evangelicals and several other Protestant churches, including two United Churches of Christ, an Episcopal Church and a Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

Arlington Park Racetrack

By the start of the 20th century Arlington Heights had about 1,400 inhabitants, and it continued to grow slowly with a good many farms and greenhouses after World War II. By then Arlington Heights was also known for Arlington Park, a racetrack founded in 1927 by the California millionaire Harry D. "Curly" Brown upon land formerly consisting of 12 farms. Camp McDonald and two country clubs were founded in the 1930s. On July 31, 1985, a fire burned down the grandstand. The current six-story grandstand was completed and opened for use June 28, 1989.

Population increase

A population explosion took place in the 1950s and 1960s, when the spread of automobile ownership, together with the expansion of the Chicago-area economy, the baby boom, and white flight from the city, drove the number of people in Arlington Heights—expanded by a series of annexations—up to 64,884 by 1970. By then virtually all the available land had been taken up, and the formerly isolated depot stop found itself part of a continuous built-up area stretching from Lake Michigan to the Fox River.


Welcome to Arlington Heights, Illinois
Welcome sign

Arlington Heights is located at 42°05′42″N 87°58′51″W / 42.094976°N 87.980873°W / 42.094976; -87.980873 (42.094976, -87.980873).

According to the 2010 census, Arlington Heights has a total area of 16.639 square miles (43.09 km2), of which 16.61 square miles (43.02 km2) (or 99.83%) is land and 0.029 square miles (0.08 km2) (or 0.17%) is water.


Arlington Heights has experienced a recent boom in development of condos, restaurants and other businesses in the Central Business District or downtown area of Arlington Heights, with restaurants experiencing the greatest overall success. Some of the most popular restaurants include Javier's Sabor Mexicano, Peggy Kinanes, Mago Grill, and Francescas. Although land and space is now limited in Arlington Heights, business and community development along with community design are key concerns. The Village of Arlington Heights is also instrumental in business, residential and community development. The community is served by many fine hotels.

BYD Company, a Chinese technology firm, has a sales office in Arlington Heights.

Top employers

According to the Village's 2010 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Arlington Park 4,500
2 Northwest Community Hospital 3,617
3 Township High School District 214 1,670
4 Nokia Solutions 1,267
5 Lutheran Home 800
6 Daily Herald/Paddock Publications 500
7 Alexian Brothers Health System 500
8 Clearbrook 450
9 Kroeschell, Inc. 450
10 Village of Arlington Heights 427

In the movies

The following movies were partially filmed in Arlington Heights:

  • Lucas (1986) (many scenes filmed at the former Arlington High School including the former Grace Gym and Foyer)
  • A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010 film) (high school scenes filmed at John Hersey High School)
  • The Lucky Ones (2008)
  • Blood and Wine (1996)
  • Normal Life (1996)
  • Uncle Nino (2003)


Arlington Heights has two stations (Arlington Heights and Arlington Park) on Metra's Union Pacific/Northwest Line, which provides daily rail service between Harvard, Illinois, and Chicago. Other nearby rail service includes the Metra North Central Line. Metra's proposed STAR line, if it were to be funded and built, would likely include a third station on the far south end of Arlington Heights.

Interstate 90 and Illinois Route 53 (northern extension of Interstate 290) run along the south and western edges, respectively, of the city, providing easy access to nearby O'Hare International Airport, the city of Chicago, and other suburbs.

Arlington Heights Road is a main street running north-south through all of central Arlington Heights. Running to the south it passes through Elk Grove Village, and its southern terminus is in Itasca of DuPage County. Running north it passes through Buffalo Grove, and its northern terminus is in Long Grove of Lake County. Northwest Highway (U.S. Route 14) runs northwest-southeast through central Arlington Heights, from Chicago to Crystal Lake of McHenry County. Other major streets/roads include Rand Road (U.S. Route 12), Golf Road (Illinois Route 58), Algonquin Road (Illinois Route 62), Dundee Road (Illinois Route 68), Palatine Road, Central Road, Hintz Road, Euclid Avenue, Dunton Avenue, Campbell Street, White Oak Street, Thomas Street, Olive Street, Oakton Street, Kennicott Avenue, Ridge Avenue, Dryden Avenue and Windsor Drive.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 1,424
1900 1,380 −3.1%
1910 1,943 40.8%
1920 2,250 15.8%
1930 4,997 122.1%
1940 5,668 13.4%
1950 8,768 54.7%
1960 27,878 218.0%
1970 65,058 133.4%
1980 66,116 1.6%
1990 75,460 14.1%
2000 76,031 0.8%
2010 75,101 −1.2%
Est. 2015 75,926 1.1%
U.S Census Bureau U.S. Census Bureau

As of the census of 2000, there were 76,031 people, 30,763 households, and 20,518 families residing in the village. The population density was 7,633.3 per square mile (2,947.2/km2). There were 131,725 housing units at an average density of 11,933.3 per square mile (4,607.5/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 90.56% White, 0.96% African American, 0.08% Native American, 5.98% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 1.19% from other races, and 1.19% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.46% of the population.

There were 30,763 households out of which 99.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.4% were married couples living together, 63% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.3% were non-families. 29.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 15% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family size was 3.05.

In the village, the population was spread out with 23.1% under the age of 18, 6.0% from 18 to 24, 29.8% from 25 to 44, 25.0% from 45 to 64, and 16.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years.


Climate data for Arlington Heights, Illinois
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 62
Average high °F (°C) 28
Daily mean °F (°C) 21
Average low °F (°C) 13
Record low °F (°C) −26
Precipitation inches (mm) 1.90
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