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East Chicago, Indiana
Indianapolis Blvd
Indianapolis Blvd
Official seal of East Chicago, Indiana
Indiana Harbor, The Harbor, E.C., The Twin City (East Chicago & Indiana Harbor neighborhoods – used in the early 1900s).
"Progredemur" (We Progress)
A City of Hope and Progress
Location of East Chicago in Lake County, Indiana.
Location of East Chicago in Lake County, Indiana.
Country United States United States
State Indiana Indiana
County Lake
Township North
Incorporated (Town) 1889
Incorporated (City) 1893
 • Type Mayor-Council
 • Total 14.86 sq mi (38.50 km2)
 • Land 14.18 sq mi (36.71 km2)
 • Water 0.69 sq mi (1.78 km2)
591 ft (180 m)
 • Total 26,370
 • Density 1,860.32/sq mi (718.29/km2)
Standard of living (2008-12)
 • Per capita income $13,457
 • Median home value $86,800
Time zone UTC-6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (Central)
ZIP code
Area code 219
FIPS code 18-19486
GNIS feature ID 0433875
Interstate, U.S. and State Routes Indiana Toll Road logo 1968.svg I-90.svg US 12.svg US 20.svg Indiana 312.svg Indiana 912.svg
Waterways Grand Calumet River
Indiana Harbor and Ship Canal
Lake Michigan
South Shore Line station East Chicago
Public transit East Chicago Transit
Demographics (2010)
White Black Asian
35.5% 42.9% 0.1%
Islander Native Other Hispanic
(any race)
0.0% 0.6% 20.9% 50.9%
Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 1,255
1900 3,411 171.8%
1910 19,098 459.9%
1920 35,967 88.3%
1930 54,784 52.3%
1940 54,637 −0.3%
1950 54,263 −0.7%
1960 57,669 6.3%
1970 46,982 −18.5%
1980 39,786 −15.3%
1990 33,892 −14.8%
2000 32,414 −4.4%
2010 29,698 −8.4%
2020 26,370 −11.2%
Source: US Census Bureau

East Chicago is a city in Lake County, Indiana, United States. The population was 29,698 at the 2010 census. It is the home of Marktown, Clayton Mark's planned worker community.


A post office called East Chicago has been in operation since 1889. The city was named from its location east of Chicago, Illinois.

The Indiana Harbor Public Library and Marktown Historic District are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

For 105 years, East Chicago was home to the Inland Steel Company (1893-1998).

In 2009, parts of East Chicago were discovered to have toxic lead and arsenic contamination, designated the USS Lead Superfund Site. The Superfund site is divided into three zones, with public housing and residential properties. Residents' decades-long concerns about lead contamination were confirmed in 2016 via EPA testing, especially affecting over 270 families in the West Calumet Housing Complex. As Governor of Indiana, Vice-President Mike Pence declined to declare the Superfund site a state emergency; his successor Governor Eric Holcomb has issued Executive Order 17-13, declaring a disaster emergency in East Chicago.


According to the 2010 census, East Chicago has a total area of 16.155 square miles (41.84 km2), of which 14.09 square miles (36.49 km2) (or 87.22%) is land and 2.065 square miles (5.35 km2) (or 12.78%) is water.


2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 29,698 people, 10,724 households, and 7,197 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,107.7 inhabitants per square mile (813.8/km2). There were 12,958 housing units at an average density of 919.7 per square mile (355.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 42.9% African American, 35.5% White, 0.6% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 18.1% from other races, and 2.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 50.9% of the population.

There were 10,724 households, of which 40.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 27.9% were married couples living together, 31.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 7.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 32.9% were non-families. 29.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.75 and the average family size was 3.42.

The median age in the city was 30.9 years. 31.4% of residents were under the age of 18; 9.7% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.4% were from 25 to 44; 22.2% were from 45 to 64; and 11.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 46.8% male and 53.2% female.


The nearest commercial airport to East Chicago is the Gary/Chicago International Airport in neighboring Gary, but it does not have any scheduled passenger service. The closest commercial airport with scheduled passenger service is Chicago Midway Airport.

The South Shore Line has a station in East Chicago.

US 12 and US 20 go through the Indiana Harbor and East Chicago sections of the city, respectively, before joining up on both sides. Indiana State Road 912, the Cline Avenue Expressway, connects East Chicago with the Indiana Toll Road and Borman Expressway, and serves the casino and steel mills on the lakefront.

Bus transit

The city operates a free bus service known as East Chicago Transit. It features three routes: Crosstown, West Calumet, and Griffith Plaza. GPRT Route R1 stops in East Chicago en route from Hammond to Gary. PACE operates Route 892, a special work shuttle between Gary, East Chicago and UPS' Hodgkins facility. Its schedule coincides with UPS workers' shifts. The route is operated in cooperation with UPS, which partially funds its operations.


  • Indiana Harbor
    • North Harbor
    • Washington Park
    • Prairie Park
    • Sunnyside
    • Lakeside
  • East Chicago
    • Northside
    • Southside
    • Calumet
    • Roxana Park
    • New Addition (West Harbor)
  • Marktown


  • School City of East Chicago serves the city. All residents are zoned to East Chicago Central High School.
  • Ivy Tech community college

East Chicago Public Library System operates a main library at 2401 East Columbus Drive and the Robert A. Pastrick Branch Library at 1008 West Chicago Avenue at Baring Avenue. East Chicago also has two charter school options, East Chicago Urban Enterprise (K-8), and East Chicago Lighthouse Charter School (K-7).

Notable people

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