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Old Posted Sep 25, 2020, 2:59 AM
Steely Dan's Avatar
Steely Dan Steely Dan is online now
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Historical Ring Cities

this thread is about satellite cities from the 19th century or prior.

chicago has 4 older ring cities from the 19th century that have since been gobbled up by latter-half 20th century sprawl.

what's kinda weird, though, is the almost perfect symmetry in their distances from downtown chicago.



- Waukegan, IL (pop. 89,321): ~35 miles NNW of downtown chicago (incorporated in 1849)

- Elgin, IL (pop. 114,797): ~35 miles WNW of downtown chicago (incorporated in 1854)

- Aurora, IL (pop. 180,542): ~35 miles WSW of downtown chicago (incorporated in 1845)

- Joliet, IL (pop. 150,362): ~35 miles SW of downtown chicago (incorporated in 1852)



all 4 of these cities started out as independent places; not subordinate to chicago in their early development in the 19th century. they are not "burbs" in the traditional sense.

but it is interesting to me that all of them seemed to form at roughly the same time and distance from the big alpha city in a near-perfect ring, and were then consequently consumed by sprawl.


does your metro area follow a similar pattern of a ring of older, larger, but historically independent cities that have been swallowed up?
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Oct 14, 2021 at 6:26 PM.
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