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Aurora, Illinois SperlingViews



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aurora - 6/24/2009
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travis
Aurora, IL

I grew up in the Fox Valley and moved to Chicago in my late teens. After returning to the area after 20yrs, I decided to buy in the historic East side in Aurora (Lincoln Ave/Fourth St). Aurora has greatly improved since my memories in the 80's and 90's. The crime rate has dropped tremendously and the old historic homes are gradually being bought up by caring homeowners and slowly being brought back to their original glory. The beautiful downtown unfortunately has seen it fair share of vacancies and nothing much is happening outside of the casino, Waubonsee College, and the Paramount Arts Centre. The cost of living in Aurora is much more affordable than the surrounding towns for first time homebuyers. There are so many great benefits living here though; much less congestion than other suburbs since Aurora feels like a city on its own. Naperville, Batavia, Geneva and Oswego are 10 minutes drives for great shopping and nice restaurants. Aurora is a very diversity city with majority being caucasian. Latin and African American I believe follow in that order. Other wonderful areas in Aurora include the Historic Westside (Garfield/Downer Pl.) and the Riddle Highlands. From living in a extremely large wonderfully diverse city like Chicago, Aurora was a wonderful transition to call home. If your looking for more of a cookie-cutter suburban town like Wheaton, Wilmette, or Hinsdale, Aurora is defintely not for you. I hope this perspective helps a few of you in your decision of relocating.

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Steven
Aurora, IL

Winters too long! - 9/22/2012

Winters too long,cold and snowy, i dread it more every year! Will retire out of here in a few years!

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Steve
Aurora, IL

Quality of Life - 4/18/2012

I have lived in Aurora, or nearby, for 22 years. As with any community, it has changes with the times. Quality of life can only be determined by the individual, not by an organization or survey. Organizations and surveys can only provide statistics. Quality of life goes beyond statistics. There is sufficient retail and culture in the Aurora area to satisfy most anybody. Chicago is less than an hour east for those seeking more. Traffic is heavy, prices are higher than most other cities, and there is a very diverse population. For the newcomer, it will either be wonderful, or chaotic. I moved here 22 years ago with the intention of staying 5 years. I'm still here, and I'm from a small farming community downstate. Give it a try. The quality of life is only what you make it.

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Andrew
Aurora, IL

Oakhurst North - 9/25/2010

Everything from the neighborhood to the school district is fantastic.

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James
Aurora, IL

Something for everyone - 7/1/2010

Aurora is the second largest city in Illinois. For families, the Fox Valley Park district offers affordable activities for all age ranges. A network of bike trails along the Fox river and radiating like spokes into nearby towns offers long rides or short trips through peaceful neighborhoods and countrysides. There's no shortage of shopping as major retailers are found on both the east and west side of the Fox river.

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Alexandria
Aurora, IL

Life in Aurora - 4/3/2010

Fine place to live, convenient, great schools, awesome park district. Keep in District 204 for best education.

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travis
Aurora, IL

aurora - 6/24/2009

I grew up in the Fox Valley and moved to Chicago in my late teens. After returning to the area after 20yrs, I decided to buy in the historic East side in Aurora (Lincoln Ave/Fourth St). Aurora has greatly improved since my memories in the 80's and 90's. The crime rate has dropped tremendously and the old historic homes are gradually being bought up by caring homeowners and slowly being brought back to their original glory. The beautiful downtown unfortunately has seen it fair share of vacancies and nothing much is happening outside of the casino, Waubonsee College, and the Paramount Arts Centre. The cost of living in Aurora is much more affordable than the surrounding towns for first time homebuyers. There are so many great benefits living here though; much less congestion than other suburbs since Aurora feels like a city on its own. Naperville, Batavia, Geneva and Oswego are 10 minutes drives for great shopping and nice restaurants. Aurora is a very diversity city with majority being caucasian. Latin and African American I believe follow in that order. Other wonderful areas in Aurora include the Historic Westside (Garfield/Downer Pl.) and the Riddle Highlands. From living in a extremely large wonderfully diverse city like Chicago, Aurora was a wonderful transition to call home. If your looking for more of a cookie-cutter suburban town like Wheaton, Wilmette, or Hinsdale, Aurora is defintely not for you. I hope this perspective helps a few of you in your decision of relocating.

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clayton
Yorkville, IL

weather - 12/23/2008

7 months good 5 months gloomy, cold, wet and gray

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Cynthia
Aurora, IL

Colleges - 10/9/2008

Aurora is located in the heart of a great number of easily accessible colleges. Transportation to the colleges is easy- via railroad, car, bus or Amtrak. Additionally, the largest and number one rated junior college is within easy driving distance of Aurora (College of DuPage). The opportunities at this reasonably priced junior college are boundless- often more than what is availalbe at smaller four year schools.

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Allison
Aurora, IL

family - 8/23/2008

great place to raise a family

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Jason
Aurora, IL

traffic - 5/4/2008

What makes the quality of life here in the burbs of Chicago has got to be the traffic. The housing stock went way up with little or no upgrading of the roads to get to those houses!!

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Pat
Aurora, IL

City of Lights -- Aurora; and nearby Naperville - 8/26/2007

I live on the eastern side of Aurora, I've lived here for 7 years. The city has its mix of low income, middle income and upper income people. The city is about 45 minutes west of Chicago when there are no traffic delays. The Fox Valley Park District has some very nice programs. The Aurora Library has 3 branches and a very good selection. Lots of shopping nearby, a major mall on the far east side and an upscale outlet shopping mall on the north side. Also alot of strip malls and big box stores on the eastern border of Aurora, western border of Naperville. If you live in the Naperville school district part of Aurora, on the east side, the schools are fantastic. The Aurora district schools are not as highly rated. Crime is higher in the downtown section of Aurora than in the far east or far western sides of Aurora. Aurora is next to Naperville, named one of the best places to live by Money Magazine. Naperville and Aurora have a great selection of restaurants and Naperville also has a vibrant and safe, walkable downtown, but is experiencing parking problems. The area is getting very crowded however, lots of traffic and gridlock around rush hour. Excellent train service from the area to downtown Chicago with many express trains. Major airport, O'hare is about 40-45 minutes away. Decent hospitals is the surrounding area. Culture programs abound, there is the Paramount Arts Center and a casino in downtown Aurora, a new arts center being built by North Central College in downtown Naperville and a great community college 20 minutes away. Cost of housing on the far east side, single family ranges from about $350-$1mm or more. Property taxes in the area average about 2-2.5% of your home's value -- quite high. Very suburban, with a touch of urban, is how I would describe this area.

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Ken
Aurora, IL

Recommend place to live in Aurora - 4/11/2007

I have seen some negative comments about Aurora, but I could say much the same about most larger towns. We have lived in Aurora for nearly 4 years on the far West side and we don't have a lot of negatives about the area. First, the East side of town near the river does have some bad areas, but that has improved dramatically. Yes there are still some gang issues, but that has gone down. Having said that, School district 129 which is the west side of the fox river, has some very good elementary, middle schools, and a good high school. The main issue is the high school which has nearly 4,000 students. Aurora has a large blend of minorities, I would estimate the school is about 38% white, 30% hispanic, and 30% black, and 2% other. (This is an unscientific estimate based upon what we have experienced with children at Hall Elementary, Jefferson Middel School, and West High School. In our Neighborhood the split is probably 50% white and the rest, hispanic, black and other minorities. We have found our neighborhood to be safe and very friendly. The far east side of Aurora, also has a good reputation. Because Aurora is located 40 miles from downtown Chicago, if you are looking for nightlife that would be the place to go. But if you want a good friendly neighborhood for your family, Aurora isn't bad. The cost of living is much lower then the surrounding communities. It also has a free zoo, (not large, but not bad for its size) that is a nice place to go on the weekend for a few hours.

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Ken
Aurora, IL

Recommend place to live in Aurora - 4/11/2007

I have seen some negative comments about Aurora, but I could say much the same about most larger towns. We have lived in Aurora for nearly 4 years on the far West side and we don't have a lot of negatives about the area. First, the East side of town near the river does have some bad areas, but that has improved dramatically. Yes there are still some gang issues, but that has gone down. Having said that, School district 129 which is the west side of the fox river, has some very good elementary, middle schools, and a good high school. The main issue is the high school which has nearly 4,000 students. Aurora has a large blend of minorities, I would estimate the school is about 38% white, 30% hispanic, and 30% black, and 2% other. (This is an unscientific estimate based upon what we have experienced with children at Hall Elementary, Jefferson Middel School, and West High School. In our Neighborhood the split is probably 50% white and the rest, hispanic, black and other minorities. We have found our neighborhood to be safe and very friendly. The far east side of Aurora, also has a good reputation. Because Aurora is located 40 miles from downtown Chicago, if you are looking for nightlife that would be the place to go. But if you want a good friendly neighborhood for your family, Aurora isn't bad. The cost of living is much lower then the surrounding communities. It also has a free zoo, (not large, but not bad for its size) that is a nice place to go on the weekend for a few hours.

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Debby
Aurora, IL

When the Lights Go Out in the City - 4/7/2007

As a long-time resident of Aurora (The City of Lights) I am sad to say that I am finally giving up and moving on. I will miss Her many beautiful old mansions in the various historic districts that are no longer safe. I will remember walking through downtown to go shopping at Carsons, when it was there. Now the signs hanging from Her classic tall buildings along Broadway are in Spanish and I cannot read them. Her schools are no longer proudly diverse, and some of their rankings have become shameful. My thanks to City government, police, and fire for their gallant efforts but they are loosing the battle. It will take more than a casino and a landmark theatre to save Her. Nostalgic.

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audrey
Round Rock, TX

Thinking about relocated to Aurora,Ill from Austin - 3/23/2007

What is the best area to live in Aurora,Ill.

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Tina A
Aurora, IL

Can't wait to leave. - 7/26/2006

We moved to Aurora because my husband was transfered here almost 2 loooooong years ago. I like our apartment complex. I have gone back to school and I love Aurora University. That's about it. I am begining to hear sirenes almost every night. There is not much culture to speak of. Down town is dead. You have to go to another city to find a decent place to shop. The only really good thing is that we are surrounded by places like Brookfield Zoo, and Chicago. Other wise we'd be bored to death. Also, Aurora does have a Premium Outlets mall. It's just difficult to shop there in the winter and when there is any number of bus tours visiting the mall. Can't wait to leave.

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