Orland Park Named One of Chicago Magazine's "Best Places to Live"

Orland Park Named One of Chicago Magazine's "Best Places to Live"
Posted on 03/18/2014

Orland Park has joined an elite list, having been named one of Chicago Magazine’s best places to live.

“This is a great honor for Orland Park,” said Mayor Dan McLaughlin. “The village’s low crime rate, our exceptional amenities and access to downtown Chicago were all important parts of Orland Park being named,” the mayor said.

The magazine used statistics from Midwest Real Estate Data, the U.S. Census Bureau, the Illinois State Board of Education and the police departments for Chicago and every town in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lane, McHenry and Will Counties.

“It’s especially gratifying when a well respected source like Chicago Magazine makes an unsolicited finding that recognizes our community’s value,” the mayor added.

“We eliminated suburbs with violent crime rates above their county’s average,” author Ian Spula wrote in the magazine.

Orland Park’s crime index decreased 2.38 % from 2013 to 2012.

“We are very proud of Orland Park being named and in particular for the village’s low crime rate being noted,” said Trustee Dan Calandriello, chair of the village’s Public Safety Committee. “This was a big part of the mayor’s State of the Village Address last month --- what a safe community Orland Park is,” he added.

Cook County suburbs making the list with Orland Park include Barrington, Northbrook, LaGrange and Wilmette. Those from DuPage County include Hinsdale and Wheaton. Lake County is represented by Highland Park and Lake Bluff with the sole winner from Kane County being Geneva. Woodstock, in McHenry County, made the cut as did the only other south suburb on the list --- Frankfort in Will County.

The magazine studied how home prices have fared in recent years compared with prices in neighboring areas as well as whether buyers can get good value for their money. Orland Park’s median home sale price for 2013 was $275,000, an increase of three percent since 2012. The number of home sales in Orland Park for 2013 was listed at 442.

Winning communities included those with schools that scored above average on standardized tests and offered ease of transportation downtown. Communities with several el stops and at least one Metra stop earned extra points.

Describing the selection process, Spula wrote, “Finally, I hit the pavement to assess which spots possess those hard-to-define qualities that matter hugely when you’re looking for somewhere to live. Things like vibrancy (are there lots of bustling restaurants and shops?). Beauty (are there architecturally interesting buildings or just cookie-cutter developments?). Friendliness (does the community have a natural center that brings people together?). Is it, quite simply, a great place to call home?”

“They studied everything that makes Orland Park great --- a variety of housing options, our low crime rate, great schools, outstanding parks, transportation, shopping for everyone and Downtown Orland Park,” McLaughlin said. “We were very excited to see that they mentioned the Old Orland Historic District and its link to Ninety7Fifty on the Park,” the mayor added.

Print copies of the magazine were delivered in the Sunday, March 16 Chicago Tribune. The online version of the article appears at www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/April-2014/chicago-neighborhoods.