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Algonquin, Illinois is situated 49 miles northwest of Chicago, cradled by the gently-sloping foothills of the Fox River Valley. The village has experienced considerable growth in the last fifty years, expanding from 2,000 residents in 1960 to around 30,000 today. Like many of Chicago's suburban areas, the land went through many stages to become the thriving mini-city we see now. Things kicked off in Algonquin in the mid-1830s when a group of colonists from the east coast came across the spot and decided it would be a nice place to settle down. There was an extended dispute over what they should call their newfound homeland, but a day before Christmas Eve in 1847 the townspeople concluded that Algonquin was a worthy name (it had been the name of one of the original settlers' ships), and that was that.
As time moved forward the little town of Algonquin evolved into a popular summer destination for folks who lived in Chicago. New railroad tracks connected the remote village to Chicago and provided cramped city dwellers with a lovely escape from the noise and congestion of urban life. After the turn of the century Algonquin acquired an interesting position with the young automobile industry. Because of its geographical characteristics, Algonquin was the perfect place to test the quality of new car models. Basically, if the vehicle could climb the hills of Algonquin, it was golden! The testing turned into a national event and successful automobiles were awarded the "Algonquin Cup." Needless to say, the hills are no longer used to evaluate cars, but a park was established at one the sites in 2004 and fittingly designated Hill Climb Park.
Today Algonquin is a vital community with a good school system, successful commercial corridors, and several residential neighborhoods with a variety of housing options and prices.
Instead of having a designated park association to manage the local recreation areas in Algonquin, the town itself handles the upkeep of its outdoor community spaces. The scenic landscape of the Fox River Valley provides an attractive destination where flora and fauna abound. There are hiking trails and picturesque woodlands for tranquil nature walks, and parks with playground equipment and covered picnic pavilions for family outings. In addition to a network of paths and beautifully manicured grounds, the public parks in Algonquin have well-maintained athletic fields and other sports areas for pick-up games and organized events.
Residential real estate in Algonquin varies from older one-story houses to large new construction homes with modern amenities. Towering trees and privacy hedges provide natural barriers between properties and offer homeowners stunning lots that enhance the value of their homes. Algonquin neighborhoods are tucked in among the forested strips that surround the river tributaries throughout the village. Snaking residential roads and secluded subdivisions ensure a nice, safe setting excellent for families with children and folks who enjoy a spacious and peaceful locale.
Prices for detached single-family houses in Algonquin vary greatly, depending on the type and age of the property. Home buyers who like vintage charm will find 50 to 100-year-old real estate in great condition with affordable price tags. One-story homes with a bit of wear under their belts start in the mid $100,000s. Two-level houses in Algonquin are generally priced in the $200,000s and $300,000s. Newer constructions typically cost more and offer buyers upgraded appliances and fine interior finishes. Top-dollar real estate in Algonquin reaches into the $600,000s, with a few waterfront properties listed in the $800,000 to $1 million range.
Private residences dominate the Algonquin real estate scene, however, there are a number of condo and townhome developments, as well. For the most part, attached properties in Algonquin run between $150,000 and $300,000.
Algonquin Residential Real Estate Info for Single-Family Detached Homes
|Average Sale Price 2005-2006||Average # of Days on the Market||Number of Sales 2005-2006||One Year Price Change||Price Change Since 94|
Source: Multiple Listings Service of Northern Illinois
Algonquin has developed into healthy retail center with a number of shopping districts and commercial centers. Both village residents and people from outside the area enjoy the excellent selection of goods and services available in this northwest Chicago suburb.
The main shopping section in Algonquin is found along the Randall Road Corridor. There are a dozen separate retail centers here that include supermarkets, furniture galleries, big box stores, clothing and shoe shops, jewelers, outlet departments and much more. Other popular shopping areas in town the Algonquin Town Center and the Old Town District, which runs along Main Street and Route 31.
Algonquin is a very community oriented Chicago suburb that enjoys a full schedule of festivals and events throughout the year. One of village's most coveted traditions is the Hill Climb Race (a throw back to the days when automobiles were driven up the Algonquin hills to test the vehicle's ability). In late spring, Algonquin residents bring their classic cars to downtown and parade up the incline in an honorary reenactment of an age-old practice.
- Westfield Community School
- Neubert Elementary School
- Algonquin Lakes Elementary School
- Eastview Elementary School
- Algonquin Middle School
- Harry D. Jacobs High School
- Mackeben Elementary School
- Marion Conley Elementary School
- Bernice Heinemann Middle School