Lake in the Hills, Illinois

Village of Lake in the Hills

Village of Lake in the Hills
Coordinates: 42°11′12″N 88°20′51″W / 42.18667°N 88.34750°W / 42.18667; -88.34750Coordinates: 42°11′12″N 88°20′51″W / 42.18667°N 88.34750°W / 42.18667; -88.34750
Country  United States
State Illinois
County McHenry
Township Grafton, Algonquin
Incorporated 1952
  Type Council-manager
  President Paul Mulcahy
  Total 10.61 sq mi (27.5 km2)
  Land 10.38 sq mi (26.9 km2)
  Water 0.23 sq mi (0.6 km2)  2.17%
Population (2010)[1]
  Total 28,965
  Density 2,700/sq mi (1,100/km2)
  up 496.01% from 1990
Standard of living
  Per capita income $26,239 (median: $73,313)
  Home value $177,691 (median: $166,400)
ZIP code(s) 60156
Area code(s) 847 & 224
Geocode 41183
Demographics (2000)[2]
White Black Hispanic Asian
91.59% 1.50% 6.31% 3.33%
Islander Native Other
0.02% 0.14% 1.86%

Lake in the Hills (often abbreviated L.I.T.H. or LITH) is a village in McHenry County, Illinois, United States. The population was 23,152 at the 2000 census. A 2006 special census put the village's population at 29,175. As of the 2010 census, the population declined from the 2006 figure to 28,165.[3]

The village is most known for its rampant residential growth which occurred most heavily in the 1990s. Once a sleepy lakeside village of cottages and small ranches, its population skyrocketed as developers flocked to the area in the 1990s. Its population increased by 17,000 people (a nearly 400% increase) over this period, making it one of the most rapidly growing suburbs of Chicago and in the United States at that time. At the height of its building boom, the village issued over 1,000 residential building permits in 1995.

In the late 1990s, the village faced the challenge of providing adequate services and infrastructure as well as establishing an identity and community unity, since many community services (libraries, schools, fire districts) were pre-delegated to neighboring communities such as Huntley, Algonquin and Crystal Lake. However, the village continues to expand its resources and community offerings and is also endeavoring to diversify its tax base and provide more commercial and industrial businesses.


Lake in the Hills is located at 42°11′12″N 88°20′51″W / 42.18667°N 88.34750°W / 42.18667; -88.34750 (42.186729, -88.347429).[4]

According to the 2010 census, Lake in the Hills has a total area of 10.614 square miles (27.49 km2), of which 10.38 square miles (26.88 km2) (or 97.8%) is land and 0.234 square miles (0.61 km2) (or 2.2%) is water.[5]


Lake in the Hills was started in 1923 by Federal Judge Walter J. La Buy around Woods Creek Lake, which is the main lake in Lake in the Hills. By the year 1926, La Buy bought 472 acres (1.91 km2) of land which is currently Indian Trail. On this land, he built five stucco homes; only one stands in its original state, which is currently owned by the Village of Lake in the Hills. The other four original stucco homes have been altered in some way, but all still stand in the original spot by Woods Creek Lake.

The early days of Lake in the Hills saw vacationers from the Chicago area, who wanted to spend some time away from the hustle and bustle of the city. By 1950, some of the vacationers became year round residents of Lake in the Hills. On November 29, 1952, the Village of Lake in the Hills was formed and the original mayor was Bosethus Platt.

The village of Lake in the Hills remained a small, close-knit lakeside residential community for much of the 20th Century, relying on nearby towns like Algonquin and Crystal Lake for services. In 1987, the Village's first shopping center was constructed; it was built at the intersection of Algonquin Road and Oakleaf Road±. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Village made a series of large annexations extending west of Randall Road, all the way west to Illinois Route 47. Numerous subdivisions were constructed in this area throughout the 1990s and 2000s (decade) and retail development blossomed along Randall Road during this time period as well. By the mid 2000s (decade), development had slowed down and as the Village became landlocked by other municipalities, it worked to appropriately develop its remaining parcels.


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 201529,024[6]0.2%
U.S. Decennial Census[7]

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 23,152 people, 7,652 households, and 6,297 families residing in the village. The population density was 2,461.9 people per square mile (951.0/km²). There were 7,866 housing units at an average density of 836.5 per square mile (323.1/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 91.59% White, 1.50% African American, 0.14% Native American, 3.33% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 1.86% from other races, and 1.56% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.31% of the population.

There were 7,652 households out of which 51.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 73.4% were married couples living together, 6.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 17.7% were non-families. 13.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 1.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.03 and the average family size was 3.35.

In the village the population was spread out with 33.4% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 44.5% from 25 to 44, 13.4% from 45 to 64, and 3.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31 years. For every 100 females there were 100.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.8 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $80,992, and the median income for a family was $84,761 as of 2007 estimate.[9] Males had a median income of $51,598 versus $34,449 for females. The per capita income for the village was $26,239. About 1.6% of families and 2.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.3% of those under age 18 and 0.9% of those age 65 or over.


The heart and soul of Lake in the Hills is considered by many to be the collection of older neighborhoods colloquially dubbed the "Old Section". For many L.I.T.H. natives, the Old Section is considered the "true" Lake in the Hills, as it contains the lake and the hills from which the town derives its name. The Old Section is unique for its eclectic appearance, as opposed to the newer neighborhoods more homogeneous tract style. Within the Old Section there are four main neighborhoods. These four neighborhoods are as follows: the Original section, the Indian section, the Tree section, and the Presidents section. All, besides the Original section, derive their names from the street names of the area. So the Presidents section contains streets named after presidents, the Indian section of Indian tribes, and the Tree section of different species of trees. The Original section is dubbed so because it is where most of the early settlement took place. Aside from the village's older section, the village has developed several neighborhoods, especially due to the rise of subdivisions in the village over the past 15 years.


The village is served by four school districts. Consolidated School District 158 serves a majority of the village, covering its densely populated western half. School District 300 serves the older sections of town on the eastern side, and Elementary School District 47 and Community High School District 155 serve the a small portion of the central sections of the village.

Elementary schools

Elementary Schools serving Lake in the Hills include:


Lincoln Prairie Elementary School was Illinois School District 300's highest-scoring elementary school in the 2006 Iowa Test of Basic Skills (school evaluation tests).

Middle schools

Middle Schools serving Lake in the Hills include:

High schools

High Schools serving Lake in the Hills include:

All three high schools are in the Fox Valley Conference and are major rivals of each other.

Community colleges

McHenry County College in Crystal Lake and Elgin Community College in Elgin are the community colleges that serve the village.


Huntley Area Public Library serves residents in the western sections of the village while Algonquin Area Public Library District serves residents in the eastern sections of the village.


Even though Huntley Park District serves the village's western parts, Lake in the Hills maintains its own park and recreation department within village limits and provides immense programs and diverse types of parks and recreational areas. Significant recreational areas include:


The village is located along the northern fringe of the Randall Road corridor, one of the most sought-after retail corridors in the Chicago metropolitan area. As a result, the village has a good portion of its retail in this section. The village's other major retail area is along Algonquin Road.

Community activities and traditions


In January 2011, a Chicago Tribune story reported that 89 percent of the driveways in Lake in the Hills were coated with coal tar sealants. Driveway dust study in the town was contaminated with very high levels of benzo(a)pyrene, a highly toxic chemical found in coal tar, and the "amount was 5,300 times higher than the level that triggers an EPA Superfund cleanup at polluted industrial sites." Coal tar sealants are permitted to be sold since the coal tar industry pressured the Environmental Protection Agency to remove coal tar-based pavement sealants from environmental laws.[10]


Notable people


  2. 2000 United States Census Data
  3. American FactFinder, U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 28 January 2014.
  4. "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  5. "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2015-08-04.
  6. "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016.
  7. "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  8. "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  9. American FactFinder U.S. Census Bureau
  10. Chicago Tribune, Jan 15 2011, New Doubts Cast on Safety of Common Driveway Sealant, by Michael Hawthorne,,0,7422954,full.story
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