As Mount Prospect moves into its second century, Mayor Arlene Juracek described the community as one continuing to draw new residents and businesses, during her annual State of the Village address Thursday.
The village saw 23 ribbon cuttings among retail, restaurant, service and manufacturing businesses in 2017, and more than 30 percent of current residents moved into their homes after 2010, she said.
Juracek gave her address during the Mount Prospect Chamber of Commerce's Dynamic Year Luncheon at Victoria in the Park Banquets.
She said the village's reality is very different from prevalent descriptions of people and businesses fleeing Illinois.
"Out-migration, including flight to other regions of the country, seems to be the favored explanation, yet if any of you have been to your local block party in the last year I'm pretty sure you, like me, have marveled at the influx of young families with children -- lots of small children -- to the community," she said.
In fact, comparison of census data from 2010 to 2016 shows a slight increase in the village's population, from 54,167 to 54,552, even without accounting for the recent annexation of 223 acres on the south end of Mount Prospect. The median age has dropped a bit during that period, from 39.7 to 39.5 years old.
A resurgent interest in the Kensington Business Park has dropped its vacancy rate to 9 percent, benefiting nearby restaurant and retail centers as well, Juracek said.
Pending economic development projects include a commercial and industrial proposal near the northwest corner of Elmhurst and Algonquin roads, rezoning for a new restaurant and service businesses on the long-vacant Mitchell Buick site on Rand Road, a high-end apartment complex with a restaurant at Busse Road and Main Street, and additional retail and residential units at the corner of Prospect Avenue and Maple Street downtown.
These examples demonstrate how much the village has been planning ahead even during a yearlong celebration of its Centennial, when a temptation to merely look back might have existed, Juracek said.
"I hope the one thing you take away from my remarks is that our celebration was as much about our high prospects for the future as it was about our reverence for the past," she added.