Oak Park, IL
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Oak Park profile


Living in Oak Park


Oak Park is a larger medium-sized village located in the state of Illinois. With a population of 52,261 people and 14 constituent neighborhoods, Oak Park is the 29th largest community in Illinois. Oak Park has an unusually large stock of pre-World War II architecture, making it one of the older and more historic villages.

Oak Park home prices are not only among the most expensive in Illinois, but Oak Park real estate also consistently ranks among the most expensive in America.

Oak Park is a decidedly white-collar village, with fully 93.08% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, Oak Park is a village of professionals, managers, and sales and office workers. There are especially a lot of people living in Oak Park who work in management occupations (16.27%), teaching (12.01%), and sales jobs (9.59%).

Also of interest is that Oak Park has more people living here who work in computers and math than 95% of the places in the US.

Of important note, Oak Park is also a village of artists. Oak Park has more artists, designers and people working in media than 90% of the communities in America. This concentration of artists helps shape Oak Park’s character.

A relatively large number of people in Oak Park telecommute to their jobs. Overall, about 7.46% of the workforce works from home. While this may seem like a small number, as a fraction of the total workforce it ranks among the highest in the country. These workers are often telecommuters who work in knowledge-based, white-collar professions. For example, Silicon Valley has large numbers of people who telecommute. Other at-home workers may be self-employed people who operate small businesses out of their homes.

One thing noticeable about Oak Park, although not a huge village, is that it has a large population of people who are young, single, educated, and upwardly-mobile career starters. That’s because Oak Park is full of single people in their 20s and 30s and who have undergraduate or graduate degrees and are starting careers in professional occupations. This makes Oak Park a pretty good place for young, educated career starters looking to find many people like themselves, with good opportunities for friendships, socializing, romance, and fun.

In addition to being popular with young singles, Oak Park is also home to many people who can be described as "urban sophisticates". Urban sophisticates are educated, wealthy, executives and professionals, who have urbane tastes in books, food, and travel, whether they actually live in a big city, or choose to reside in a small town. In big or medium-sized cities, urban sophisticates tend to frequent art institutions such as opera, symphonies, ballet, live theatre, and museums.

One downside of living in Oak Park is that it can take a long time to commute to work. In Oak Park, the average commute to work is 35.66 minutes, which is quite a bit higher than the national average. On the other hand, local public transit is widely used in the village, so leaving the car at home and taking transit is often a viable alternative. In addition, it is also a pedestrian-friendly village. Many of Oak Park’s neighborhoods are dense enough and have amenities close enough together that people find it feasible to get around on foot.

Although the majority of commuting trips in the village are by private automobile, Oak Park is somewhat unusual for a village of its size for having a substantial number of people who use public transportation. For a lot of people, the subway helps to get to and from their jobs every morning, which benefits everyone in the Oak Park area by reducing both traffic and air pollution.

Do you have a 4-year college degree or graduate degree? If so, you may feel right at home in Oak Park. 68.75% of adults here have a 4-year degree or graduate degree, whereas the national average for all cities and towns is just 21.84%.

The per capita income in Oak Park in 2010 was $51,890, which is wealthy relative to Illinois and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $207,560 for a family of four. However, Oak Park contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.

Oak Park is an extremely ethnically-diverse village. The people who call Oak Park home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Oak Park residents report their race to be White, followed by Black or African-American. Important ancestries of people in Oak Park include German, Irish, English, Italian, and Polish.

The most common language spoken in Oak Park is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and German/Yiddish.