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Why Naperville, IL is a Best Place to Live

Full of old-fashioned charm, good food and a promising job market, Naperville is a great place to live, work and play.

By Emma Smith on August 8, 2022


Several factors make Naperville, IL, one of the Top 100 Places to Live in America, according to Livability.com. This upscale city features a median household income that tops $127,000, and the median home value is just over $500,000. In addition, as a suburb of Chicago, Naperville ranks among the nation’s safest cities, and its economy is strong in sectors like advanced manufacturing, education, healthcare and technology. Here are other reasons why Naperville is such an excellent place to live (and work and play):

High-Paying Jobs

Naperville is in the Illinois Technology and Research Corridor that stretches along Interstate 88 in Chicago’s metropolitan area. Many R&D and technology companies are thriving along the corridor, and Naperville is also strong in healthcare, thanks largely to Edward Hospital – the city’s largest employer (4,900 people).

Nice Scenery

City officials make sure that Naperville always looks pleasing to the eye. That includes preserving the city’s Naperville Historic District, home to over 600 structures; the district belongs to the National Register of Historic Places, including the Martin Mitchell Mansion. Other noteworthy pieces of architecture in Naperville include the city’s three libraries, which attract more than 1.5 million visitors each year.

Naperville / Courtesy of Michael Kappel under a CC 2.0 license.

A Crown Jewel

Considered a place of tranquility along the Dupage River is the Naperville Riverwalk, a 1.75-mile pathway that includes bridges, fountains and outdoor sculptures for walkers and joggers. The Riverwalk is often called the city’s crown jewel, providing a natural park to be enjoyed by both residents and visitors.

Multiple Choices for College

The education sector in Naperville deserves high marks, with students having a number of options for attending college. Naperville is home to North Central College and includes satellite campuses representing DePaul UniversityGovernors State University and Northern Illinois University

Let’s Ride

For residents looking to get out of town to explore Chicagoland and beyond, Naperville is conveniently located for travelers by car or plane. Jump on the Ronald Reagan Memorial Tollway (Interstate 88), U.S. Route 34 (Ogden Ave.) or Illinois Route 59, while Interstate 55 runs only five miles south of the city. Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway airports are also only 28 and 25 miles from Naperville

Naperville IL
Naperville / iStock/DenisTangneyJr

Shopping is Hopping

Top shopping options are abundant in Naperville, including the downtown district that features more than 100 stores ranging from national favorites to one-of-a-kind boutiques such as Dash of Nash. Also in the city is Naperville Crossings, conveniently located at Route 59 and 95th Street, while Ogden Avenue is another popular district with a variety of shopping choices and restaurants.

The Food Scene

Foodies have no shortage of options in Naperville. In the winter, the city hosts the annual Naperville Restaurant Week, with up to 40 participating restaurants. For those seeking a casual dining experience and classic deli food, check out Schmaltz Delicatessen or The Lucky Penny Diner and Deli. If it’s a special date night, head downtown to Sullivan’s Steakhouse or SixtyFour – Wine Bar and Kitchen

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