This article is the thirteenth in a 50-state series: it lists the largest cities and towns (hereinafter “cities”) in Illinois by population size and provides demographic details for each city–total population, population by age group, racial composition of the population, land area, and population density.

After reading “Largest Cities in Illinois (2012),” return to this link to read “Best Places to Live in Illinois (2012).”

Similar articles for the remaining 49 states can be found at these links: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

1. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Chicago, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Chicago is the largest city in the state with an estimated population of 2,850,502.

Grouped by age, 24.2% of the population is under 18, 11.1% is 18 to 24, 31.9% is 25 to 44, 22.4% is 45 to 64, and 10.4% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 33.9.

The racial composition of the city is 39.9% White, 34.6% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American, 4.9% Asian, 18.6% from other races, and 1.7% from two or more races. The population is 27.8% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 227.13 square miles. The city’s population density is 12,550.09 people per square mile.

2. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Aurora, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Aurora is the second largest city in the state with an estimated population of 180,569.

Classified by age, 31.8% of the population is under 18, 8.0% is 18 to 24, 35.0% is 25 to 44, 19.0% is 45 to 64, and 6.2% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 30.3.

The racial complexion of the city is 61.5% White, 11.1% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 5.8% Asian, 19.0% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. The population is 36.9% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 38.53 square miles. The city’s population density is 4,686.45 people per square mile.

3. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012):** Rockford, IL

Located in the central part of northern Illinois, Rockford is the third largest city in the state with an estimated population of 158,834.

Categorized by age, 25.1% of the population is under 18, 9.5% is 18 to 24, 29.0% is 25 to 44, 22.8% is 45 to 64, and 13.6% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 35.

The racial profile of the city is 72.7% White, 19.0% Black or African American, 0.4% Native American, 2.4% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 3.5% from other races, and 1.9% from two or more races. The population is 14.3% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 56.01 square miles. The city’s population density is 2,835.82 people per square mile.

4. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012):** Joliet, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Joliet is the fourth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 144,618.

Sorted by age, 30.2% of the population is under 18, 9.5% is 18 to 24, 34.4% is 25 to 44, 18.2% is 45 to 64, and 7.7% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 30.

The racial makeup of the city is 68.9% White, 16.2% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American, 1.6% Asian, 11.1% from other races, and 2.0% from two or more races. The population is 26.4% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 38.06 square miles. The city’s population density is 3,799.44 people per square mile.

5. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012):** Naperville, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Naperville is the fifth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 143,939.

Arranged by age, 30.4% of the population is under 18, 8.3% is 18 to 24, 27.4% is 25 to 44, 26.7% is 45 to 64, and 7.2% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 35.

The racial mix of the city is 79.5% White, 4.2% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 13.4% Asian, 1.6% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. The population is 6.0% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 35.38 square miles. The city’s population density is 4,068.37 people per square mile.

6. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Peoria, IL

Situated in the northwestern part of central Illinois, Peoria is the sixth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 122,139.

Classified by age, 24.7% of the population is under 18, 13.3% is 18 to 24, 25.7% is 25 to 44, 22.8% is 45 to 64, and 13.5% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 33.8.

The racial complexion of the city is 66.5% White, 25.1% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 3.5% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 1.7% from other races, and 2.9% from two or more races. The population is 3.3% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 44.4 square miles. The city’s population density is 2,750.88 people per square mile.

7. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Springfield, IL

Located in central Illinois, Springfield is the seventh largest city in the state with an estimated population of 118,116.

Grouped by age, 23.5% of the population is under 18, 9.4% is 18 to 24, 27.5% is 25 to 44, 25.5% is 45 to 64, and 14.1% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 37.

The racial composition of the city is 78.1% White, 16.5% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 2.0% Asian, 0.6 from other races, and 2.6% from two or more races. The population is 1.9% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 54.0 square miles. The city’s population density is 2,187.33 people per square mile.

8. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Elgin, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Elgin is the eighth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 107,163.

Categorized by age, 28.5% of the population is under 18, 10.3% is 18 to 24, 32.0% is 25 to 44, 21.5% is 45 to 64, and 7.7% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 31.

The racial profile of the city is 64.8% White, 7.3% Black or African American, 0.4% Native American, 4.8% Asian, 20.0% from other races, and 2.6% from two or more races. The population is 42.9% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 25.0 square miles. The city’s population density is 4,286.52 people per square mile.

9. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Waukegan, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Waukegan is the ninth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 94,277.

Arranged by age, 28.5% of the population is under 18, 10.5% is 18 to 24, 32.9% is 25 to 44, 20.8% is 45 to 64, and 7.3% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 30.7.

The racial mix of the city is 49.5% White, 18.3% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American, 4.0% Asian, 25.6% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. The population is 52.2% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 23.01 square miles. The city’s population density is 4,097.22 people per square mile.

10. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Champaign, IL

Located in the central part of eastern Illinois, Champaign is the tenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 80,288.

An unusually large part of the population is college-aged: the city is home to the University of Illinois. Grouped by age, 17.7% of the population is under 18, 32.8% is 18 to 24, 25.6% is 25 to 44, 16.2% is 45 to 64, and 7.7% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 24.8.

The racial composition of the city is 71.8% White, 15.3% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 9.7% Asian, 1.7% from other races, and 1.3% from two or more races. The population is 4.8% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 16.99 square miles. The city’s population density is 4,562.52 people per square mile.

11. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Cicero, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Cicero is the eleventh largest city in the state with an estimated population of 80,108.

Sorted by age, 35.6% of the population is under 18, 10.4% is 18 to 24, 32.2% is 25 to 44, 16.3% is 45 to 64, and 5.5% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 27.4.

The racial makeup of the city is 27.4% White, 3.4% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 65.9% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. The population is 76.3% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 5.85 square miles. The city’s population density is 13,693.68 people per square mile.

12. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Evanston, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Evanston is the twelfth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 77,869.

A relatively large part of the population is college-aged: the city is home to Northwestern University. Arranged by age, 20.6% of the population is under 18, 16.7% is 18 to 24, 27.4% is 25 to 44, 24.4% is 45 to 64, and 10.9% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 35.1.

The racial mix of the city is 66.2% White, 19.2% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 7.3% Asian, 3.6% from other races, and 3.6% from two or more races. The population is 8.9% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 7.75 square miles. The city’s population density is 10,047.61 people per square mile.

13. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Arlington Heights, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Arlington Heights is the thirteenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 74,871.

Classified by age, 23.4% of the population is under 18, 6.1% is 18 to 24, 24.8% is 25 to 44, 28.6% is 45 to 64, and 17.1% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 42.1.

The racial complexion of the city is 87.3% White, 1.6% Black or African American, 7.1% Asian, 2.4% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. The population is 4.9% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 16.41 square miles. The city’s population density is 4,740.04 people per square mile.

14. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Bloomington, IL

Located in central Illinois, Bloomington is the fourteenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 74,188.

Grouped by age, 24.7% of the population is under 18, 12.1% is 18 to 24, 30.8% is 25 to 44, 22.9% is 45 to 64, and 9.5% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 32.9.

The racial composition of the city is 80.8% White, 9.3% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 5.3% Asian, 1.7% from other races, and 2.8% from two or more races. The population is 3.7% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 22.5 square miles. The city’s population density is 3,297.24 people per square mile.

15. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Decatur, IL

Located in central Illinois, Decatur is the fifteenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 73,799.

Categorized by age, 22.3% of the population is under 18, 11.7% is 18 to 24, 23.5% is 25 to 44, 25.8% is 45 to 64, and 16.7% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 38.1.

The racial profile of the city is 74.5% White, 20.7% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 1.0% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 3.4% from two or more races. The population is 1.6% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 41.56 square miles. The city’s population density is 1,775.72 people per square mile.

16. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Schaumburg, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Schaumburg is the sixteenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 69,807.

Sorted by age, 21.1% of the population is under 18, 9.1% is 18 to 24, 31.4% is 25 to 44, 27.4% is 45 to 64, and 11.0% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 38.2.

The racial makeup of the city is 73.7% White, 3.1% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American, 15.6% Asian, 5.4% from other races, and 1.9% from two or more races. The population is 8.6% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 19.0 square miles. The city’s population density is 3,674.05 people per square mile.

17. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Bolingbrook, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Bolingbrook is the seventeenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 68,471.

Classified by age, 31.1% of the population is under 18, 8.5% is 18 to 24, 35.0% is 25 to 44, 21.0% is 45 to 64, and 4.4% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 30.6.

The racial complexion of the city is 55.8% White, 17.9% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 9.1% Asian, 13.4% from other races, and 3.8% from two or more races. The population is 23.4% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 20.51 square miles. The city’s population density is 3,338.42 people per square mile.

18. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Palatine, IL

Situated in northeastern Illinois, Palatine is the eighteenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 66,701.

Arranged by age, 25.7% of the population is under 18, 8.4% is 18 to 24, 29.1% is 25 to 44, 26.8% is 45 to 64, and 10.5% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 37.

The racial mix of the city is 80.5% White, 3.5% Black or African American, 9.9% Asian, 3.9% from other races, and 2.2% from two or more races. The population is 16.6% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 12.97 square miles. The city’s population density is 5,142.71 people per square mile.

19. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Skokie, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Skokie is the nineteenth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 66,457.

Categorized by age, 23.1% of the population is under 18, 10.1% is 18 to 24, 21.4% is 25 to 44, 29.6% is 45 to 64, and 15.8% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 42.

The racial profile of the city is 65.3% White, 7.8% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 23.0% Asian, 2.1% from other races, and 1.7% from two or more races. The population is 6.9% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 10.04 square miles. The city’s population density is 6,619.22 people per square mile.

20. **Largest Cities in Illinois (2012)****:** Des Plaines, IL

Located in northeastern Illinois, Des Plaines is the twentieth largest city in the state with an estimated population of 56,515.

Sorted by age, 22.2% of the population is under 18, 7.7% is 18 to 24, 25.4% is 25 to 44, 28.5% is 45 to 64, and 16.2% is 65 or older. The median age of the population is 41.7.

The racial makeup of the city is 76.9% White, 1.4% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 10.0% Asian, 10.6% from other races, and 1.0% from two or more races. The population is 15.7% Hispanic or Latino of any race.

The land area of the city is 14.42 square miles. The city’s population density is 3,919.21 people per square mile.

Source(s):

“American Community Survey,” U.S. Census Bureau

“American Fact Finder,” U.S. Census Bureau ”

“Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2000,” U.S. Census Bureau