Aurora Real Estate
Aurora is the second most populous city in Illinois, and the 112th largest city in the United States. The population was 199,932 at the 2012 census. Once a mid-sized manufacturing city, Aurora has grown tremendously over the past 50 years. Originally founded within Kane County, Aurora’s city limits and population now spill over into DuPage, Will and Kendall counties. Between 2000 and 2003, the U.S. Census Bureau ranked Aurora as the 34th fastest growing city in the United States. From 2000 to 2009, the U.S. Census Bureau ranked the city as the 46th fastest growing city with a population of over 100,000.
In 1908, Aurora officially adopted the nickname “City of Lights”, because it was one of the first cities in the United States to implement an all-electric street lighting system in 1881. Aurora’s historic downtown is located on the Fox River, and centered on Stolp Island.
Aurora is on the edge of the Illinois Technology and Research Corridor. The city has a long tradition of manufacturing as does much of Chicago metropolitan area. The most prominent employer and industry was the Chicago Burlington and Quincy Railroad (later Burlington Northern) which was headquartered in Aurora. The CB&Q Roundhouse is still standing, and is now the popular restaurant originally called Walter Payton’s Roundhouse; after the Payton estate terminated its involvement in 2009 it became known as Two Brothers Roundhouse.
Downtown Aurora is home to the Paramount Theatre, a large live performance theater on the National Register of Historic Places, and the Hollywood Casino, a dockside gaming facility which is located on the Fox River. There is also the Leland Tower, a former hotel which was the tallest building in Illinois outside the Chicago city limits and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Also located downtown is the main building of Aurora Public Library and a branch campus of Waubonsee Community College.
Downtown Alive, a festival that includes live music is held on three weekends in the summer; Blues on the Fox (featuring national blues artists) is held on the Friday and Saturday of Father’s Day weekend. Roughly 8,000–13,000 people attend. The quarterly Aurora Art Walk is hosted by the Cultural Creative’s—a grassroots team of local artist, property owners, patrons and the City of Aurora. The Riverfront Playhouse is a not-for-profit theater that has held a storefront location in downtown Aurora since 1978.