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Overview

Introduction to Joliet, Illinois

Joliet is an Illinois city which lies about 45 miles from Chicago on the southwest edge of the Chicago metropolitan area. Situated on the banks of the Des Plaines River, Joliet is the county seat of Will County. The city is serviced by several major thoroughfares, including U.S. Routes 6 and 52, and Illinois State Highways 53 and 171. Interstates I-55 and I-80 run nearby, intersecting just west of the city limits. Joliet is home to Joliet Junior College, the oldest public community college in the nation.

Founded in 1673 by French-Canadian explorer Louis Joliet, the site of the present-day city of Joliet was not laid out as a town until 1834. At that time it bore the name Juliet (for reasons not apparently clear) and was part of Cook County until 1836, at which time it became the county seat of the newly-established Will County. In 1845 the community's name was changed to "Joliet," and in 1852 Joliet was incorporated as a city. In 1858 the state of Illinois established a new penitentiary in Joliet, largely due to the area's abundance of stone for prison walls and cells. By 1869 the "City of Stone" had transformed itself to the "City of Steel" concurrent with the construction of the Joliet steel mill, which along with the city's large labor force soon attracted other industries. Joliet's economy weathered a period of decline in the 1970s and 1980s but rebounded in the 1990s. Tourism became a prominent industry, aided by the establishment of riverboat casinos, and the infusion of new tax dollars fueled a revitalization of the downtown City Center.

Joliet Points of Interest

The Joliet area is replete with a wide range of arts and cultural venues as well as many parks and recreational facilities. The Joliet Historical Museum chronicles the experiences of the people who settled the Joliet area and includes a Route 66 Welcome Center. The Rialto Square Theatre, also known as the "Jewel of Joliet," has been called one of the world's ten most beautiful theatres. There are two riverboat casinos in Joliet: the Empress Casino, located on the Des Plaines River; and the Harrah’s Casino located in the downtown Joliet City Center. The Chicagoland Speedway is a state-of-the-art 75,000 seat, 1.5 mile superspeedway which hosts several NASCAR and Indy Racing League events during the year, and the Route 66 Raceway features concerts, motorsports, and more. The city's scenic Bicentennial Park, located along the Des Plaines River, includes an indoor theater as well as an outdoor bandshell in a park setting.

Joliet is home to a professional minor league baseball team. The Joliet Jackhammers are an independent team competing in the Northern League. The Jackhammer home stadium is Silver Cross Field, a 4,200-seat facility featuring luxury suites, a souvenir shop, a picnic area and a playground located inside the stadium. Less than an hour away is the city of Chicago, home to several major league teams spanning a wide variety of sports. The following teams call Chicago home:

  • MLB (Major League Baseball): Cubs and White Sox
  • NHL (National Hockey League): Blackhawks
  • NBA (National Basketball Association): Bulls
  • NFL (National Football League): Bears
  • MLS (Major League Soccer): Fire
  • AFL (Arena Football League): Rush
  • WNBA (Women's National Basketball Association): Sky
  • ABA (American Basketball Association): Rockstars
  • MLL (Major League Lacrosse): Machine

People

Total Population 147,918
Male Share of the Population 48.7%
Female Share of the Population 51.3%
Senior Citizens 8.8%
Employed Population 16+ 68,414
Age of the Population 33

Families

% of people married 47.9%
Average household size 3

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 22.9%
Median Earnings25+ $37,425
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $24,024
Median Earnings With High School Degree $29,980

Wealth

Median Family Income $69,386
% Above Poverty Level 87.8%
% Below Poverty Level 12.2%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 30 minutes
% Working from Home 2.6%
% Walking and Biking to Work 1.2%
% Using Public Transportation 2.4%

Housing

People Living Alone 22.4%
Median Gross Rent $912
Median House Value $163,900

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 46.4%
US/American 0%
English 3.9%
Irish 13.1%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Joliet Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 32 miles SW of Chicago, Illinois
County Will
Standard Zip Codes 60431, 60432, 60433, 60435, 60436
P.O. Box Zip Codes 60434
Phone Area Codes 815
Time Zone Central (-6 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 41.525
Longitude -88.081

Joliet Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Station JOLIET BRANDON RD DAM
Distance 2 miles
Jan Temp 14 to 30 F
Apr Temp 37 to 60 F
Jul Temp 63 to 85 F
Oct Temp 41 to 64 F
Annual Precip 36.9 inches
Station WHEATON 3 SE
Distance 20.2 miles
Jan Temp 14 to 32 F
Apr Temp 38 to 63 F
Jul Temp 63 to 87 F
Oct Temp 42 to 67 F
Annual Precip 37.9 inches
Station PARK FOREST
Distance 20.7 miles
Jan Temp 15 to 29 F
Apr Temp 39 to 58 F
Jul Temp 65 to 84 F
Oct Temp 43 to 63 F
Annual Precip 38.6 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Joliet, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Cresthill (60403, 60435)

Downtown Station Joliet (60432)

Stateville (60435)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Crest Hill 20,479 $63,609
Elwood 2,130 $62,390

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Joliet Public Libraries

Library
Joliet P.l.
150 N. OTTAWA ST.
Joliet, Illinois
(815) 740-2660
Library Web Site

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More Information for Librarians

Joliet Hospitals

SILVER CROSS HOSPITAL
(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
1200 MAPLE RD
(815) 740-1100
Emergency Service: Yes

PROVENA ST JOSEPH MEDICAL CENTER
(Voluntary non-profit - Church)
333 N MADISON
(815) 725-7133
Emergency Service: Yes

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Joliet High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

JOLIET CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL
201 E JEFFERSON ST
815-727-6740
A Title I School.
Serves 2,736 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 16.1

JOLIET WEST HIGH SCHOOL
401 N LARKIN AVE
815-727-6940
A Title I School.
Serves 2,257 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 19

ILLINOIS YOUTH CENTER-JOLIET
2848 W MCDONOUGH ST
815-725-1206
A Non-traditional School
Serves 287 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 15.1

JOLIET TWP HIGH SCH - ALTERNATE
110 COLLINS ST
815-727-6810
A Special Education School
Serves 76 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 12.7

STATEVILLE CORRECTIONAL CENTER
PO BOX 112
815-727-3607
A Non-traditional School
Serves 68 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 22.7

PREMIER HIGH SCHOOL
51 W JACKSON ST
815-727-6810
A Non-traditional School
Serves 42 students.

Additional Details
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Historic Joliet

photo

Court house at Joliet. between 1880 and 1901

Select a photo to view (Source):

Court house at Joliet. between 1880 and 1901

Illinois State Penitentiary between 1890 and 1901

Illinois Steel Works between 1880 and 1901

Additional Resources
Info for Joliet Government Officials


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