What are the top 10 largest cities in Illinois? Today we will answer this question. Illinois is a state of the United States. It is the 24th largest state in the country by land area. It also has more than 12 million people. That makes it the 6th most populous state in the United States.
The state is home to a variety of cities, each with its own unique character and history. Illinois has over 1,200 incorporated municipalities, including about 500 cities. But only one city has over 200,000 people, and only 8 cities have over 100,000 people.
In this blog, we’ll explore 10 big cities in Illinois by area, and uncover their unique characteristics, challenges, and the ways in which their expansive landscapes influence their development.
10. Bloomington – 27.24 square miles
Bloomington is a city located in Massillon County, Illinois. It is a vibrant and inviting place with a rich history and modern flair. It was founded in 1831 and Bloomington has grown into a thriving community with a population of over 78,000 people.
Bloomington has a total area of 27.24 square miles and offers its residents plenty of space to live. It is a beautiful city with a lot to offer visitors and residents alike. The city has a land area of 27.12 square miles and a water area of 0.12 square miles.
9. Elgin – 38.60 square miles
Elgin is a city in Illinois with a rich history and a bright future. It was founded in 1835 and incorporated as a city on April 24, 1854. The city is James T. Founded by Gifford and his brother Hezekiah Gifford, who named it after the Scottish tune “Elgin”. As of 2020, it has an estimated population of over 114,797.
Elgin has a total area of 38.60 square miles which includes both land and water. It has a long tradition of education and innovation. The city is led by Mayor Dave Kaptain and City Manager Rick Kozal. The city is home to a number of businesses and industries, including manufacturing, healthcare, and education.
8. Naperville – 39.70 square miles
Naperville is a city in DuPage County, Illinois, with a population of over 149,000 people. It is located about 25 miles west of Chicago. Naperville was founded in 1831 by Joseph Naper, and it has grown into a thriving city with a strong economy, excellent schools, and a variety of cultural attractions.
Naperville has a total area of 39.70 square miles which includes both land and water. The city’s climate is classic Midwest, with distinct seasons, from snowy winters to hot summers. The city is located along the DuPage River Trail, which is a popular spot for hiking, biking, and fishing.
7. Aurora – 45.91 square miles
Aurora is a city in Macon County, Illinois state, US with a population of over 180,000 people. It is located about 40 miles west of Chicago. It is the 2nd largest city in Illinois by population. Aurora, a city in Illinois, carries a legacy of growth and significance.
Aurora was founded in 1834 and is named after the Roman goddess of dawn. The city was originally a trading post and became a major industrial center in the late 19th century. It covers an area of 45.91 square miles and only 2% of its area is water.
6. Decatur – 47.79 square miles
Decatur is a city in central Illinois with a population of over 70,000 people. It is the county seat of Macon County and is located about halfway between Springfield and Champaign. Decatur’s history is steeped in significant events. It was founded in 1829 and is named after the War of 1812 naval hero Stephen Decatur.
Decatur has a combined land and water area of 47.79 square miles, and with 10% of its total area covered by lakes and reservoirs. It is also home to a number of cultural attractions, including the Decatur Museum, the Decatur Civic Center, and the Lincoln Square Theatre.
5. Peoria – 50.55 square miles
Peoria, located in the state of Illinois, is a city steeped in history. It is the county seat of Peoria County and is the 5th largest city in the state by area. The city’s name is derived from the Peoria tribe, an indigenous group from the Illinois Confederation. It was founded in 1691 by French explorers.
Peoria was incorporated as a village in 1835 and later as a city in 1845. The city covers about 50.55 square miles including water bodies. It is located on the Illinois River, about 170 miles southwest of Chicago. Peoria has a population of over 113,000 people.
4. Joliet – 65.82 square miles
Joliet is a city in Illinois with a population of over 150,000 people. It is located about 40 miles southwest of Chicago. Joliet was founded in 1833 and is named after Louis Jolliet, a French explorer who explored the area in 1673. It was incorporated as a city in 1852.
The city spans approximately 65.82 square miles and sits at an elevation of 610 feet. Joliet’s climate is characterized by hot, humid summers and cold winters with snowfall. Joliet is known for its history, its location on the Des Plaines River, and its steel mills.
3. Rockford – 65.92 square miles
Rockford is a city in northern Illinois. It was founded in 1834 and is the county seat of Winnebago County. It officially became Rockford in 1837, named after a rocky river ford across the Rock River. The city’s educational systems also flourished, with Rock Valley College and Rockford University being established.
Rockford has a population of about 148,000 people. The city covers an area of about 65.92 square miles. It is the 3rd largest city in Illinois by area. The city is located on the Rock River, about 90 miles northwest of Chicago. Rockford has a humid continental climate, with hot summers and cold winters.
2. Springfield – 67.49 square miles
Springfield is the capital of Illinois and the county seat of Sangamon County. It is located in central Illinois, about 150 miles southwest of Chicago. The city has a population of about 115,000 people. It was founded on April 10, 1821, and the city’s journey has been marked by significant milestones.
Springfield spans approximately 67.49 square miles and is located at an elevation of 600 feet. It is best known as the home of Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln lived in Springfield for 24 years, from 1837 to 1861. The city’s prominence as the capital was due to Abraham Lincoln’s efforts and influence.
1. Chicago – 234.53 square miles
Chicago is the third-most populous city in the United States, after New York City and Los Angeles. It is located on the shore of Lake Michigan in Illinois. The total area of the city is about 234.53 square miles. Chicago was founded in 1837 and has grown rapidly since then. Chicago is also a major tourist destination.
Chicago has a population of over 2.7 million. It is the largest city in Illinois by both population and area. The city’s name comes from the Miami-Illinois word “shikaakwa,” referring to a wild onion species. It is an international hub for finance, culture, commerce, industry, education, technology, and transportation.
These are the top 10 largest cities in Illinois by area. Each city offers its own distinct flavor and attraction. Whether you’re exploring the cultural gems of Joliet or the historical significance of Springfield, these largest cities by area highlight the rich tapestry that makes up the state of Illinois.
These cities offer a variety of attractions and activities for visitors, from world-class museums and theaters to professional sports teams and outdoor recreation opportunities. So If you are planning a trip to Illinois, be sure to check out one of these great cities.