Nov 22, 2021 - News

Morris becomes the state's population center

Illinois demographic center of gravity
Data: U.S. Census; Map: Thomas OIde/Axios

New 2020 Census data pinpoints southwest suburban Morris as the population center of Illinois.

  • That means half of the state's population resides north of Morris and the other half lives south. The same for east and west.

Why it matters: The movement of these "centers" indicates where people are relocating in the state and consequently which parts will get more funding and political representation.

  • 2020 Census data shows yet another jump northeast, part of a pretty steady 180-year march from just outside Springfield toward Chicago.
  • Sorry, rural parts of Illinois. That's just where the power and people continue to move.

Three facts about Morris: It was the site of a persistent warehouse fire this summer that caused mass evacuations due to toxic fumes from the lithium batteries burning inside.

  • Located 60 miles southwest of Chicago, it's the county seat of Grundy County.
  • According to the Morris municipal website, "in 1839, villagers built the Shakey Bridge across Nettle Creek to influence stagecoach lines to travel through the village."
  • Personally, we might have chosen a name like "Very Stable Bridge."

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