Links of Interest
- VIDEOS: Aurora
- City of Aurora
- Aurora Township
- Aurora on Wikipedia
- Encyclopedia of Chicago: Aurora
- Aurora Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce
- Aurora Public Library
- Orchard Valley Golf Course
- SciTech Hands On Museum
- Aurora Regional Fire Museum
- The Paramount Theatre
- Downtown Aurora
Distance to Downtown Chicago
Average Drive Times
48 Minutes to Chicago Loop
54 Minutes to O'Hare Airport
58 Minutes to Midway Airport
Ideally located just 40 miles west of Chicago, the far-western suburb nestles along the winding shores of the Fox River. Surrounded by smaller riverside villages and towns, such as North Aurora, Sugar Grove, Montgomery, and Oswego, Aurora is an energetic commercial hub and lively entertainment center for those living in or doing business in southern Kane, western DuPage, northwestern Will and northeastern Kendall Counties.
Interstate 88 runs east and west through the city, hooking up with a series of interstate and state thoroughfares, providing a speedy commute to Chicago, neighboring suburbs, and to Indiana and Wisconsin.
Pioneers first came to Aurora Township in 1833. In 1834, Joseph and Samuel McCarty, millers from New York, settled what has become the City of Aurora. Originally named McCarty’s Mills in honor of the brothers, the city’s name was changed to Aurora, which means luminous bands of light, in 1837.
The city grew bigger and brighter with the coming of the railroad, which established numerous facilities for building, repairing, and maintaining coach cars and locomotives, including a roundhouse with stalls for 30 locomotives. Aurora became a railroad center, with the railroad employing more than 1,000 workers. Today the rehabbed roundhouse is now included in the National Register of Historical Places.
As the population grew, Aurora continued to shine. The Aurora Democrat newspaper was established in 1846. The Aurora Beacon News offered weekly coverage of the area beginning in 1847. The Bank of Aurora opened its doors in 1856. The fire department was organized in 1856. Aurora elected its first mayor in 1857. Construction on the new city hall was completed in 1864. The public library opened for business in 1881. The Aurora Chamber of Commerce was organized in 1907 and incorporated in 1920.
In 1881, Aurora became the first city in the world to switch on streetlights powered by electricity. The "City of Lights" shone more brightly than ever. During the past century, Aurora has continued to welcome both residents and business, its light shining strong. Today, hundreds of companies and more than 135,000 people enjoy the life-enhancing amenities and opportunities that Aurora has to offer.