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City of Waukegan

  •   State: 
    Lake County
      County FIPS: 
    42°22′13″N 87°52′16″W
      Area total: 
    24.47 sq mi
      Area land: 
    24.22 sq mi (62.72 km²)
      Area water: 
    0.26 sq mi (0.66 km²)
    715 ft (218 m)
    1829; Incorporated (town) March 31, 1849; Incorporated (city) February 23, 1859
  •   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: 

    Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    3,688.36 residents per square mile of area (1,424.06/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

As of the 2020 census, the population of the city was 89,321, ranking it the seventh most populous city within the Chicago metropolitan area. Waukegan has a significant working-class population, as well as some poor areas within the city. The city is situated approximately 26 miles (42 km) north of Chicagos city limits. It is the county seat of Lake County, Illinois, and is located in the Lake County portion of the Chicago metro area. The name "Waukegance" was created by John H. Kinzie and Solomon Juneau, and the new name was adopted on March 31, 1849. In 1853, residents commemorated the anniversary of emancipation of slaves in the British Empire with a meeting. In the 1920s and 1930s, African-Americans began to migrate to the city, mostly from the south. The town was no stranger to racial strife. In June 1920, an African-American boy allegedly hit the car of an off-duty sailor from nearby Great Lakes Naval Base with a rock, and hundreds of white sailors gathered at Sherman House. The sailors cried "lynch 'em," but were successfully kept back by the intervention of the police. In 1919, a labor strike at the US Steel and Wire Company had acquired Washburn & Moen, which had acquired the Washburn-Burner Wire Company. In 1925, a wrongfully convicted African American war veteran was released from prison on appeal after 25 years. He was later shot and killed by the Ku Klux Klan.


Waukegan is the primary city name, but also Beach Park are acceptable city names or spellings. The official name is City of Waukegan . Waukegan was first recorded as Rivière du Vieux Fort on a 1778 map by Thomas Hutchins. By the 1820s, the French name had become "Small Fort River" in English, and the settlement was known as "Little Fort" The name Waukegance (meaning "little fort") was created by John H. Kinzie and Solomon Juneau on March 31, 1849. In 1853, residents commemorated the anniversary of emancipation of slaves in the British Empire with a meeting. During the 1860s, a substantial German population began to grow inside the city. In the 1920s and 1930s, African-Americans began to migrate to the city, mostly from the south. The town was no stranger to racial strife. In June 1920, an African-American boy allegedly hit the car of an off-duty sailor from nearby Great Lakes Naval Base with a rock, and hundreds of white sailors gathered at Sherman House. The sailors cried "lynch 'em," but were successfully kept back by the intervention of the police. In 1966, the W Kaukegan riot of 1966 contributed to the disappearance of the city in part of the Central and Central Shore area of Chicago. The city was officially incorporated into the Chicago metropolitan area during the 2000 census. This took place as a result of sprawl of suburban sprawl, who was affectively dissolving the identity as a self-standing city. Despite this, the city has retained a distinct industrial character in contrast to many of the residential suburbs along Chicago's North Shore.


Waukegan is located at 42°2213N 87°5216W (42.3703140, 87.8711404). It is on the shore of Lake Michigan, about 11 miles (18 km) south of the border with Wisconsin and 37 miles (60 km) north of Downtown Chicago. The city has a total area of 24.50 square miles (63.45 km²), of which 24.26 sq miles (62.83 km²) are land and 0.24sq miles (0.62km²), or 0.99%, are water. The record high temperature is 108 °F (42 °C), which was set in July 1934, while the record low is 27°F (33 °C) set in January 1985. Waukegans contains three Superfund sites of hazardous substances that are on the National Priorities List. The book Lake Effect by Nancy Nichols gives an account of the effects of PCBs on W Kaukegan residents. The town is located in the humid continental climate zone (Köppen: Dfa) with warm to hot (and often humid) summers, and cold and snowy winters. It was designated as one of 43 Great Lakes Areas of Concern in 1990, with OMC providing $2025 million in funding to clean up PCBs and asbestos at the Outboard Marine Corporation plant. In 1970, it was discovered that the lack of a bottom liner in the landfill had allowed leachate to enter groundwater, contaminating the water with volatile organic compounds and PCBs.


As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 89,078 people living in the city. The racial makeup of the town was 46.6% White (21.7% non-Hispanic White), 19.2% African-American, 4.3% Asian, 1.2%. Native American, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 24.6%. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 44.82%. Over half (54.4%) of the population identified as members of a religious group. The largest group were Roman Catholics, who comprised 31.0% of city residents. On July 1, 2020, St. Anastasia Parish and St. Dismas Parish merged, with the former having the parish school and the parish having the church. Waukegan has one of the highest Honduran population in Illinois, as well as many Puerto Rican, Cuban, and Central American descendants. 5.3 per cent of the non- Hispanic white population were of German ancestry. The median income for a household in theCity was $42,335. The per capita income for the city was $17,368. About 24% of families and 24.7%. of the city were below the poverty line. The average household size was 3.09 and the average family size was3.68. The city has a population of 87,901 people, 27,787 households, and 19,450 families. The population density was 1,475.0/km² (3,762.8/mi2). There were 29,243 housing units.


The City of Waukegan is run on a mayorcouncil government. The city government consists of a single elected mayor and city clerk, with a city council composed of nine aldermen. The alderman are elected to represent the nine wards that the city is made up of. Any new member is sworn on the first Monday in May of their respective election year, as it coincides with the first city council meeting of the month. Since at least 1996, no mayor has been elected for more than a single term. The current mayor is Ann B. Taylor, the city's first female mayor. She was elected in April 2021, defeating incumbent Sam Cunningham. The last election was in April 2019, with the next one scheduled for April 2023. The 9th Ward seat was replaced by Thomas Hayes, appointed by Ann Taylor as she gave up her seat to be inaugurated as mayor. The members of the city council serve for four years, and are all elected on the same election year. The next election is scheduled to be in April 2020, and the last election to be held in April 2022. The mayor is currently Ann Taylor, who was elected to her first term in 2021. The council members with their respective political affiliation are as follow:. Dr. Sylvia Sims Bolton; Democratic Party. Patrick D. Seger; Republican Party. Edith L. Newsome; Republican. Keith E. Turner; Democratic. Party. Felix L. Rivera; Independent. Dr Lynn M. Florian; Democratic party.


The city has plans for redevelopment of the lakefront. The lakefront and harbor plan calls for most industrial activity to be removed, except for the Midwest Generation power plant and North Shore wastewater treatment facilities. The existing industry would be replaced by residential and recreational space. The city has had an annual "Scoop the Loop" summer festival of cruising since 1998, which since 2010 has become a monthly event during the summer. The first step in the revitalization effort, the opening of the Genesee Theatre, has been completed, many new restaurants have opened, buildings have been renovated, and the City of Waukegan has made substantial investments in the pedestrian areas and other infrastructure. The current incarnation is known as "SCoop Unplugged". The city also set up several tax increment financing zones which have been successful in attracting new developers. According to the city's 2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city were: The city's top employers were: the city’s four major banks, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the Milwaukee Brewers and the Milwaukee Dells. The top employers for the city in 2013 were: Waukeshiek County, Wisconsin, and Waukshire County, Illinois, with a combined workforce of more than 100,000 people. In 2014, the city had the highest unemployment rate in the U.S. at 7.7%. The city had a record-high unemployment rate of 7.8% in 2013, the highest in the state.


Downtown Waukegan is the urban center of Lake County. ArtWauk features paintings, sculptures, films, dance, theater, comedy, music, performance art, food, and pedicabs. The Fiestas Patrias Parade and Festival highlights and celebrates the independence of the many Hispanic countries that are represented in Waukesgan, including Mexico, Belize, Honduras, etc. The HolidayWAUK (HolidayWalk) is downtown WauKEgan's holiday festival. The Lake County Courthouse (including the William D. Block Memorial Law Library), and much more call Downtown W Kaukegan their home. There are many restaurants, bars, shops, and a number of museums in the area. There is also a lake, a harbor, a history museum, a sports center, a theater, and many other places to eat and play. The town's population is about 4,000 people, making it one of the fastest-growing towns in the U.S., according to a recent survey by the Lake County Chamber of Commerce. It is also the second-largest city in Lake County, with a population of about 3,000. The city's economy is the third-largest in the state, after Lake County and the City of Chicago. It has the fourth-largest economy in the United States, according to the 2007 Census. It also has the fifth-largest population in the country, behind Chicago and Los Angeles. It's the largest city in the Midwest, followed by Illinois.


Waukegan has three early childhood schools, fifteen elementary schools, five middle schools, and three high school campuses. The multi-campus Waukegans High School serves high school students. Immanuel Lutheran School is a Pre-K-8 grade school of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep, a private Catholic high school, is in Waukgan. The WauKgan Public School District 60 serves about 17,000 students in preschool through grade twelve. The district has a budget of $1.2 billion. It is the largest school district in the state of Wisconsin. It has a population of about 16,000. The school district has an annual budget of about $2.1 million. It also has a enrollment of about 18,000 children in preschool to 12th grade. In 2009, the school district had a budget for the year of $3.2 million. In 2010, the district had an enrollment of 16,856. It was the largest district in Wisconsin in the 2010-11 school year. It had a growth rate of 1.7 percent in the first quarter of the 2011-12 school year, and 1.8 percent in second quarter. In 2012, the District had a enrollment growth of 2.1 percent. In 2013, it had a population growth of 0.9 percent, and a growth of 3.2 percent in 2012-13. In 2014, the School District reported a population increase of 1%. In 2015, the population grew by 1.3 percent.

Government services

Waukegan has a port district which operates the city harbor and regional airport. The Lake County McClory recreational trail passes through the city. There are five fire stations in the city and three licensed taxi companies. Metra provides public bus service throughout Waukegans and surrounding areas. The W Kaukegan Fire Department provides fire protection and paramedic services for city. The city is home to the International Association of Fire Fighters, which is represented by its members. The town is located on the former Chicago North Shore and Milwaukee Railroad right-of-way, along the route of the former Milwaukee and North Shore Railroad. It is located near the city's downtown area, near the lake, and near the town's lakefront. It has a population of about 6,000 people, with a population growth rate of 0.7% in the last five years, according to the 2010 census. The population of the city is about 4,000. The water port provides access for 90100 large shipping vessels yearly. The harbor has a capacity for 100,000 tons of gypsum, and 12 cement silos. The airport has a U.S. Customs facility, allowing for direct international flights. It provides a non-motor route spanning from Kenosha, Wisconsin, to the North Shore, along a right of way of the old Milwaukee & North Shore railroad. It also has a public transit system, which runs daily from early morning to late evening via the Union Pacific/North Line.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois = 46.3. 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 28. 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 22. 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 Waukegan = 3.7 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 89,321 individuals with a median age of 31.3 age the population grows by 3.59% in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 3,688.36 residents per square mile of area (1,424.06/km²). There are average 3.22 people per household in the 29,256 households with an average household income of $43,776 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is 12.60% of the available work force and has dropped -4.75% 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 20.20%. The number of physicians in Waukegan per 100,000 population = 277.9.


The annual rainfall in Waukegan = 32.9 inches and the annual snowfall = 37.1 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 110. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 189. 82 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 13.4 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 49, 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 Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois which are owned by the occupant = 51.54%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 46 years with median home cost = $77,620 and home appreciation of -12.23%. 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 $19.95 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 $5,799 per student. There are 17.3 students for each teacher in the school, 823 students for each Librarian and 819 students for each Counselor. 4.29% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 7.81% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 3.71% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • Waukegan's population in Lake County, Illinois of 9,426 residents in 1900 has increased 9,48-fold to 89,321 residents after 120 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 49.34% female residents and 50.66% male residents live in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois.

    As of 2020 in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois are married and the remaining 45.65% are single population.

  • 28.5 minutes is the average time that residents in Waukegan 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.

    69.12% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 22.15% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 3.77% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 1.41% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois, 51.54% are owner-occupied homes, another 41.77% are rented apartments, and the remaining 6.69% are vacant.

  • The 57.57% of the population in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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