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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  THURSDAY, DEC. 6, 2012

American Community Survey Details Characteristics Within Chicago Metro Area

The U.S. Census Bureau today released estimates from the American Community Survey, the most detailed portrait of America's towns and neighborhoods — even for the smallest communities within a metro area — for the combined years from 2007 to 2011. The American Community Survey permits communities to observe the composition of their population, from preschool to the oldest ages and milestones in between, including college, work and marriage.

Wide variation exists in the languages spoken at home, educational attainment, the share of persons working in manufacturing, marital status and living arrangements, and many other measures across the Chicago metropolitan area.

"The American Community Survey provides the only statistics on school enrollment, jobs, housing and many other measures for all towns and neighborhoods," said Thomas Mesenbourg, the Census Bureau's acting director. "The results are used by everyone from retailers, homebuilders and police departments, to town and city planners. The numbers permit them to examine demographic patterns within metropolitan areas."

Selected highlights from the 2007-2011 estimates show the wide variation in conditions within the Chicago metro area:

  • About 6.9 percent of the enrolled population 3 and older in the Chicago metropolitan area were enrolled in preschool or nursery school. In University Park, Ill., 15.7 percent were enrolled, among the highest in the area. Among towns at the other end of the spectrum was Norridge, Ill., where 1.3 percent were enrolled.
  • In Summit, Ill., 70.9 percent of people 5 and older spoke a language other than English at home, among the highest in the metro area. Among the lowest was Robbins, Ill., at 2.1 percent. For the area as a whole, the corresponding rate was 28.3 percent.
  • In Winnetka, Ill., 87.9 percent of people 25 and older had at least a bachelor's degree, among the highest in the metro area. Among the lowest was Lake Station, Ind., at 7.6 percent. For the metro area as a whole, 33.8 percent had a bachelor's degree.
  • In Harvard, Ill., 31.6 percent of the civilian employed population 16 and older worked in the manufacturing industry, among the highest in the area. Among the places at the opposite end of the spectrum was Flossmoor, Ill., where 3.3 percent did so. Area-wide, the corresponding rate was 12.8 percent.
  • The percentage of males 15 and older who were married (not including those who were separated) was 75.5 percent in Glencoe, Ill., and the corresponding percentage for females was 76.4 percent in Inverness, Ill. Both were among the highest in the metro area. The percentages were not significantly different from one another. In Robbins, Ill., 24.5 percent of males were married and 21.8 percent of females were married. Both were among the lowest in the metro area. The percentages were not significantly different from one another.
  • In Robbins, Ill., 26.2 percent of households had a person 65 and older who lived alone, among the highest in the metro area. In Lakemoor, Ill., the corresponding percentage was 1.1 percent, among the lowest. Area-wide, the corresponding rate was 8.9 percent.

More information about the social, economic and housing characteristics of cities and towns in the Chicago area, as well as information on other geographies, can be found on the Census Bureau's American FactFinder website.

The American Community Survey five-year estimates are available for all states, counties, places, congressional districts, census tracts and block groups. Today's release marks the first time since the 2000 Census that statistics for ZIP Code tabulation areas — a close approximation of the U.S. Postal Service's ZIP Code areas — have been released on such a wide range of topics.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: February 10, 2014