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City of Rockford

  •   State: 
    Winnebago County
      County FIPS: 
    42°16′16″N 89°05′38″W
      Area total: 
    65.92 sq mi
      Area land: 
    64.91 sq mi (168.11 km²)
      Area water: 
    1.01 sq mi (2.63 km²)
    728 ft (222 m)
    1839; Incorporated 1839 (as a town) January 3, 1852 (as a city)
  •   Latitude: 
      Dman name cbsa: 
    Rockford, IL
    Eastern Standard Time (EST) UTC-5:00; Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) UTC-4:00
      ZIP codes: 

    Rockford, Winnebago County, Illinois, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    2,290.24 residents per square mile of area (884.27/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

Rockford is a city in Winnebago County, Illinois, located in the far northern part of the state. It is the fifth-largest city in the state and the 171st most populous in the United States. Rockford traces its roots to 1834, as the combined settlements of Midway were founded on both banks of the Rock River. In the second half of the 19th century, Rockford was notable for its output of heavy machinery, hardware and tools. By the twentieth century, it was the second leading center of furniture manufacturing in the nation, and 94th largest city. Since the late 1990s, efforts in economic diversification have led to growth of automotive, aerospace, and healthcare industries. Notable outdoor or recreational spots near Rockford are Rock Cut State Park, Atwood Homestead County Forest Preserve, and Lowden State Park. Its contributions to music are noted in the Mendelssohn Club, the oldest music club in the country, and performers such as Phantom Regiment and Cheap Trick. In 1852, the long-running "Forest City" nickname first appeared, used by the New York Tribune. According to 2020 U.S. Census data, the City of Rockford had a population of 148,655 with an outlying metropolitan area population of 348,360. The city is home to the BMO Harris Bank Center, the Coronado Theatre, the Laurent House, and the Burpee Museum of Natural History. The Rockford Art Museum, Tinker Swiss Cottage and Rockford University are among the city's cultural and historical sites.


Rockford is the primary city name, but also Machesney Park, Machesney Pk are acceptable city names or spellings. The official name is City of Rockford. Rockford traces its roots to 1834, as the combined settlements of Midway were founded on both banks of the Rock River. In 1847, Rockford was officially chartered as a city; a year later, the long-running "Forest City" nickname first appeared, used by the New York Tribune. During the Civil War, one of the first Illinois regiments to be mobilized, the Zouaves, were from Rockford. The city also served as the site for Camp Fuller, a training site for four other infantry regiments. Rockford became the alma mater of Jane Addams in 1881. An influx of Italians, Poles, and African Americans replaced the previously dominant Irish and Swedes in Rockford in the early 20th century. In 1903, the dedication of the Winnebago County system by a Carnegie County saw the first building of Rockford's public library. In the Twentieth century, the city was no stranger to stranger political issues, with a coalition of labor and socialists elected to 25 percent to 40 percent in mayoral elections. In 2010, the Rockford City Council voted to create a public school district, with Rockford Central High School being the first school district in the city. In 2012, the City Council approved a plan to build a new high school, with the high school to be the first high school in the state of Illinois. In 2013, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign opened its doors to the public for the first time.


Since 1946 closure of Camp Grant, much of the length of Kishwaukee has been redeveloped into parkland and forest preserves, effectively forming the southern border of the city. The city is also prone to severe snowstorms in winter, and blizzards are frequent winter occurrences. On July 5, 2003 at 04:13, a line of severe storms and their associated high winds caused widespread damage on both the east and west sides of Rockford. It took months to clear the damage, but because the storm struck so early in the morning there were no injuries or fatalities. On April 21, 1967, a violent F4 tornado struck the neighboring town of Belvidere, killing twenty-four people and injuring hundreds more. The winter months can bring bitterly cold Arctic air masses. The average temperature in January is 29.1 °F (1.6 °C). June is Rockford's wettest month while January is the driest. During a typical year, Rockford receives 37.24 in (946 mm) of precipitation. On January 13, 1979 over 9 inches (23 cm) of snow fell on Rockford in just a few hours during one of the strongest blizzors in the city's history. The snowiest winter in the history of the. city was the winter of 1978-1979, when 74.5 inches (189cm) of. snow fell. The record high temperature is 112 °f (44 °F), set on July 14, 1936, and the record low temperature is 31 °F.


As of the 2010 census, there were 152,871 people and 66,700 households. The racial makeup of the city was 65.1% White (58.4% Non-Hispanic white), 20.5% African American, 2.9% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 7.5%. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 15.8% of the population. Catholics make up Rockford's largest religious group. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockford, several large evangelical and non-denominational churches, and several Lutheran and other Mainline Protestant congregations serve the Christian community. The Jewish community is served by a synagogue, the Muslim community by a mosque, and the Sikhs by a temple. Rockford is in the center of its namesake metropolitan area. In the late 1950s, Rockford surpassed Peoria as the second largest city in Illinois by population, holding onto that position into the 21st century. In 2003, the status was changed as it was overtaken by Aurora after the results of a special census held by the latter city (as the two cities were not counted together, a direct comparison was not possible until the national census in 2010). In 2010, 20% of Winnebago County residents are Catholic. According to 2010 figures, 19% are Evangelical, 10% are Mainline Protestants and 48% belong to a non-listed faith or have no religion. The per capita income for the city is $19,781. 19.6% of those under the age of 18 were living below the poverty line.

Law and government

Rockford is the largest Dillon's Rule municipality in Illinois, having revoked home rule in 1983. The Rockford City Council consists of 14 alderman (elected every 4 years), with the city divided into 14 wards. Rockford is within a single township. By area and population, Rockford Township is thelargest township in Illinois. The township performs civil services for several unincorporated areas of the city, as well as for other areas outside of city limits. The city's mayor is chosen in a general election every four years. The council, as of August 2021, consists of: 14 aldermen, individually elected from each ward in the city. The town of Rockford has a population of 1.2 million. The population of the township is 1.3 million. It has a total area of 2.4 million square miles (3.7 million square kilometers) and is the second largest city in Illinois after Chicago. The county seat of Winnebago County is Rockford, which is home to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. It is also the largest county in Illinois by area, with an area of 3.7 square miles. The state's largest city is Chicago, which has a size of 2 million square feet (1.8 million sq km) and a population 1.9 million (0.6 millionsq km). Rockford's city council is made up of a mayor and a city council member, each elected every two years.


As of January 2017, the ten largest employers in Rockford, Illinois are: Mrs. Fisher's, also known as Mrs. fishers Potato Chips. Since 1923, Rockford has been home to Kegel Harley-Davidson; owned by the same family since 1912, it is the oldest family-owned Harley- Davidson franchise in existence. Rockford is home to a regional manufacturer of potato chips, Mrs. Fishers Potato chips, which is a recognized brand name in parts of the Midwestern United States. It is also home to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which has been based in the city since the 1950s. The town's population is about 2,000 people, and it has a population of about 50,000. The city's economy is based on the construction industry, which employs about 1,500 people. It also has a manufacturing industry, with about 1.5 million people working in the manufacturing industry. The largest employer in the town is Mrs. Fischer's Potato Chips, which makes potato chips for the regional market. It has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state of Illinois, at 0.7%. The town has a high unemployment rate, at 1.8%. The city has a low unemployment rate of 0.6%. It has a higher unemployment rate than the national average of 1.9%. It is the second-largest city in Illinois, after Carbondale, with a unemployment Rate of 1%. Rockford's unemployment rate is 1.7.


By highway, Rockford is linked by highway to Wisconsin (Madison, Milwaukee), Iowa (Dubuque), and many parts of Illinois. The centralized location of the region has worked to an advantage in attracting jobs in the logistics and transportation industries. The Rockford Mass Transit District (RMTD) provides fixed-route and paratransit service, with a service area including Rockford, Lachesney Park, and Loves Park. In April 2018, the city became included in the LimeBike bicycle-sharing network. Using a mobile app, residents, rent bicycles through a dockless app, unlocking the dockless bicycles through GPS. The company was discontinued in early 2019; its business model was shifted from e-bikes to bicycles supplied by the company, LimeBikes. The city is home to the Illinois State Museum, which is located on the edge of the city. It is also the home of the Rockford Museum of Art, which was founded in 1875. The museum is located in the city's historic downtown area, which includes the former Rockford Opera House and the former Music Hall of Fame. Rockford was the site of the U.S. Civil War Battle of the Bulge, which took place in 1864. It was also the birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement, which began in the late 19th century. It has been home to a number of institutions, including the University of Illinois at Rockford and the Illinois Institute of Technology.


Rockford is home to Rockford University, a private 4-year university. The city is also the home of Rock Valley College, a 10,000-student community college. Rockford Public School District 205 covers an area of roughly 170 square miles (440 km²) With approximately 27,000 students, it is the state's fourth-largest school district by enrollment. Beginning with the class of 2021, Rockford graduates with a cumulative 3.0 GPA can attend Northern Illinois University tuition free. The region also supports 27 sectarian and nonsectarian private schools ranging from elementary to secondary education. Laura Jane Addams (1860-1935) was the first graduate to receive a B.A. degree from the newly accredited baccalaureate institution in 1882. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931 for her efforts to promote international peace and justice. She died in 2007 at the age of 87. She is survived by her husband, Robert Addams, and their three children. The couple have a son, James, who was born in 1993. Rockman, a son of the late John R. R. Sjostrom, is a former mayor of Rockford who served as mayor from 1998 to 2002. Rockmen, a former city official, served as president from 2002 to 2007. Rockfords, Illinois is a member of the National Council of State Legislators (NCSL) and the National Association of Public School Administrators (NAPSA). Rockford, Illinois, has one of the largest populations of public school teachers in the United States. It has a population of 1.2 million.

Culture and tourism

Rockford is home to the Coronado Theatre, a civic and entertainment center named one of 150 Great Places in Illinois by the American Institute of Architects. Anderson Japanese Gardens, modeled after the Portland Japanese Garden and landscaped by Hoichi Kurisu, is 10 acres in size and features a teahouse and guesthouse in the sukiya-zukuri style. Aldeen Golf Club is one of the top fifty golf courses in the nation that cost under $50 to play. Rock Cut State Park's 3,092 acres are now utilized for camping, hiking, fishing and boating, and hunting. The Burpee Museum of Natural History is the world's most complete juvenile Tyrannosaurus rex, Jane, as well as a Triceratops, Homer. The Discovery Center Museum, a children's museum featuring over 250 hands-on exhibits including a planetarium, is on the "12 Best Children's Museums In The U.S." list by Forbes. Rockford Art Museum and the bases for Northern Public Radio and the Rockford Dance Company make up the downtown Riverfront Museum Park complex. The last museum under the park district's authority is Midway Village and Museum Center, a recreation of a Victorian-era village. The eastern riverwalk of Rockford is maintained by the parkDistrict, featuring the Nicholas Conservatory and Gardens. Located on the bank of the Rock River, the conservatory is the largest in the state of Illinois. Just north of the gardens is Symbol, an Alexander Liberman sculpture moved from downtown during the 1980s.

Arts and culture

In 2021, Rafael Blanco (artist) painted Thinking of you Rockford in Rockford, Illinois. This 22-foot by 77-foot piece featured a young Black Female dreaming alongside math and science illustrations. The piece was commissioned by the Rockford Museum of Art and Science, which is housed in the Illinois State Museum of History and Art, and is open to the public.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois = 72.9. These Air Quality index is based on annual reports from the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The number of ozone alert days is used as an indicator of air quality, as are the amounts of seven pollutants including particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, lead, and volatile organic chemicals. The Water Quality Index is 56. A measure of the quality of an area’s water supply as rated by the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The EPA has a complex method of measuring the watershed quality, using 15 indicators such as pollutants, turbidity, sediments, and toxic discharges. The Superfund Sites Index is 20. Higher is better (100=best). Based upon the number and impact of EPA Superfund pollution sites in the county, including spending on the cleanup efforts. The UV Index in Rockford = 3.5 and is a measure of an area's exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. This is most often a combination of sunny weather, altitude, and latitude. The UV Index has been defined by the WHO ( and is uniform worldwide.


The most recent city population of 148,655 individuals with a median age of 36.4 age the population grows by 5.20% in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 2,290.24 residents per square mile of area (884.27/km²). There are average 2.47 people per household in the 74,302 households with an average household income of $41,858 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is of the available work force and has dropped -4.54% over the most recent 12-month period and the projected change in job supply over the next decade based on migration patterns, economic growth, and other factors will increase by 15.02%. The number of physicians in Rockford per 100,000 population = 226.5.


The annual rainfall in Rockford = 34.9 inches and the annual snowfall = 30.3 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 95. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 191. 87 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 13.8 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 45, where higher values mean a more pleasant climate. The Comfort Index measure recognizes that humidity by itself isn't the problem. (Have you noticed nobody ever complains about the weather being 'cold and humid?) It's in the summertime that we notice the humidity the most, when it's hot and muggy. Our Comfort Index uses a combination of afternoon summer temperature and humidity to closely predict the effect that the humidity will have on people.

Median Home Cost

The percentage of housing units in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois which are owned by the occupant = 60.41%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 47 years with median home cost = $92,760 and home appreciation of -9.93%. This is the value of the years most recent home sales data. Its important to note that this is not the average (or arithmetic mean). The median home price is the middle value when you arrange all the sales prices of homes from lowest to highest. This is a better indicator than the average, because the median is not changed as much by a few unusually high or low values. The property tax rate of $25.64 shown here is the rate per $1,000 of home value. If for simplification for example the tax rate is $14.00 and the home value is $250,000, the property tax would be $14.00 x ($250,000/1000), or $3500. This is the 'effective' tax rate.


The local school district spends $4,696 per student. There are 18 students for each teacher in the school, 1729 students for each Librarian and 987 students for each Counselor. 5.81% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 12.59% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 7.04% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • Rockford's population in Winnebago County, Illinois of 31,051 residents in 1900 has increased 4,79-fold to 148,655 residents after 120 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 51.26% female residents and 48.74% male residents live in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois.

    As of 2020 in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois are married and the remaining 45.63% are single population.

  • 21.7 minutes is the average time that residents in Rockford require for a one-way commute to work. A long commute can have different effects on health. A Gallup poll in the US found that in terms of mental health, long haul commuters are up to 12 percent more likely to experience worry, and ten percent less likely to feel well rested. The Gallup poll also found that of people who commute 61­–90 minutes each day, a whopping one third complained of neck and back pain, compared to less than a quarter of people who only spend ten minutes getting to work.

    82.23% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 11.38% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 1.48% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 2.60% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois, 60.41% are owner-occupied homes, another 31.84% are rented apartments, and the remaining 7.76% are vacant.

  • The 48.63% of the population in Rockford, Cook County, Illinois who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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