Money's list of America's best small cities


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59. Arlington Heights, IL
Arlington Heights
WINNER
Top 100 rank: 59
Population: 73,000
Compare Arlington Heights to Top 10 Best Places
Many people who aren't from Arlington Heights think of it simply as "that place with the racetrack." But that gives a misleading picture of this appealing town an hour west of downtown Chicago.

Arlington Heights boasts attractive neighborhoods, a fairly low cost of living, and a friendly vibe; it attracts many educated professionals who want more space than they can get closer to the city.

As for Arlington Park Racetrack, it was the site of the first thoroughbred million-dollar race. Unfortunately, the unemployment rate here is on the high side. --J.S.

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Is Arlington Heights a great town, or what?
Arlington Heights stats
  City stats Best places avg.
Median family income
(per year)
$105,149 $90,957
Job growth %
(2000-2009)*
-2.70% 15.71%
See jobs near Arlington Heights
Median home price $270,000 $239,391
See Arlington Heights homes for sale
Test scores reading
(% above/below state average)
37.0% 22.9%
Test scores math
(% above/below average)
29.2% 22.9%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 23 2
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 203 24
Restaurants
(within 15 miles)
6,303 2,967
High temp in July ° F 83.9° 86.2°
Low temp in Jan ° F 15.3° 21.3°
Median age 40.3 35.3
Financial City stats Best places avg.
Median family income
(per year)
$105,149 $90,957
Family purchasing power
(annual, cost-of-living adjusted)
$114,917 $86,860
State sales tax 6.25% 5.45%
State income tax rate
(highest bracket)
N.A. 7.35%
State income tax rate
(lowest bracket)
3.00% 2.96%
Auto insurance premiums
(Average price quotes, for the state)
$1,441 $1,707
Job growth %
(2000-2009)*
-2.70% 15.71%
See jobs near Arlington Heights
Housing
Median home price $270,000 $239,391
Average property taxes N.A. $3,418
See Arlington Heights homes for sale
Education
Colleges, universities and
professional schools (within 30 miles)
51 25
Test scores reading
(% above/below state average)
37.0% 22.9%
Test scores math
(% above/below average)
29.2% 22.9%
% students attending public/private
schools (located within town limits)
70.9/29.1 87.8/12.2
Quality of life
Air quality index*
(% of days AQI ranked as good)
50.0% 77.8%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 23 2
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 203 24
Median commute time (in minutes) 23.8 21.4
% population with commute
45 mins. or longer
20.2% 13.6%
% population walk or bike to work 2.2% 3.6%
Leisure and culture
Movie theaters
(within 15 miles)
47 31
Restaurants
(within 15 miles)
6,303 2,967
Bars
(within 15 miles)
429 207
Public golf courses
(within 30 miles)
380 162
Libraries
(within 15 miles)
122 72
Museums (accredited by AAM;
within 30 miles)
17 10
Ski resorts (within 100 miles) 15 12
Arts funding (Dollars per person of state funds spent on arts) 0.7 1.5
Weather
Annual rainfall
(inches)
37.50 37.40
% clear days in the area 23 29
High temp in July ° F 83.9° 86.2°
Low temp in Jan ° F 15.3° 21.3°
Median age 40.3 35.3
Completed at least some college
(% of residents)
72.5% 71.5%
Married % 60.2% 56.6%
Divorced % 7.6% 8.4%
Racial diversity index
(100 is national average; higher numbers indicate greater diversity)
93.6 94.9
From the August 2010 issue
Notes: *County data
(3) Crime incidences are estimates based on FBI 2008 Universal Crime and incidence reports, OnBoard analysis.
  • Homes for sale
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Find Your Best Places
Region
Northeast South
Midwest West
Ranking
Top 100 winners only
Population
8.4M
46,000
Home Prices
2009 median sales prices
$1.2M
$36K
Video
Using statistics from data provider Onboard Informatics, we crunched the numbers in order to zero in on America's best small cities for families. (Last year, we looked at small towns, with populations between 8,500 and 50,000.) More

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