Illinois Route 72

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Illinois Route 72

IL 72 highlighted in red
Route information
Maintained by IDOT and CDOT
Length110.71 mi[1] (178.17 km)
Major junctions
West end IL 73 in Lanark
Major intersections
East end I-90 / IL 43 in Chicago
CountryUnited States
CountiesCarroll, Ogle, DeKalb, Kane, Cook
Highway system
I-72 IL 73

Illinois Route 72 is an east–west state highway in northern Illinois. It runs from the intersection with Illinois Route 73 north of Lanark east to Illinois Route 43 (Harlem Avenue) in Chicago. This is a distance of 110.71 miles (178.2 km).[1]

Route description

Looking east at Illinois Route 72 just west of Illinois Route 43 (Harlem Avenue). Due to a lack of right-of-way, the western lanes are routed onto a two-lane bridge over the eastbound exit ramp from Interstate 90 (Kennedy Expressway) to Harlem Avenue.

Illinois 72 is called Higgins Road for most of its length in the Chicago area, and has been redirected in parts of the area to accommodate for new features. Near Rosemont, the road has been shifted to make way for O'Hare International Airport — further east, parts of the road have been moved to make room for the Northwest Tollway (Interstate 90). The road serves as a major six-lane thoroughfare for several western suburbs, including Schaumburg, Elk Grove Village, and Hoffman Estates.

Illinois 72 runs concurrently for one block with Illinois Route 83 in Elk Grove Township, and Illinois Route 47 and U.S. Highway 20 by Starks, an unincorporated village approximately 60 miles (97 km) from Chicago. The latter is a Wrong-way concurrency, where one can be driving both west on Illinois 72 and east on U.S. 20 at the same time. West from Chicago, Illinois 72 largely parallels Interstate 90 until Starks, crossing over and under the highway six times without an intersection. On a larger scale, it is the main east–west artery to Chicago between Interstate 90 and Illinois Route 64.

It serves the towns and cities of, from west to east, Lanark, Shannon, Forreston, Leaf River, Byron, Stillman Valley, Kirkland, Kingston, Genoa, Hampshire, Gilberts, Sleepy Hollow, West Dundee, East Dundee, South Barrington, Hoffman Estates, Schaumburg, Elk Grove Village, Des Plaines, Rosemont, and Chicago. Higgins Road/Higgins Avenue continues east-southeast from Harlem Avenue in Chicago to Milwaukee Avenue near Lawrence Avenue.

Route 72 is one of seven state roads to enter the city of Chicago. It was once part of the Galena-Chicago Stagecoach Trail.


SBI Route 72 originally ran from Lanark to Starks. It was extended east in 1937 and 1938 to East Dundee, and then to Chicago. In 1968, the designation of IL 72 was truncated back to IL 43 (Harlem Avenue), lopping off 10.5 miles (16.9 km).[3] In 1982, it was shortened again, this time to Illinois Route 73.[2]

The crash site of American Airlines Flight 191 is located along the road as Touhy Avenue, just north of the road and north of O'Hare International Airport near a trailer park.

Major intersections

CarrollLanark0.000.00 IL 73 – Lanark, Pearl CityWestern terminus of IL 72
IL 26 north – Freeport
West end of IL 26 concurrency
IL 26 south (First Avenue) – Dixon
East end of IL 26 concurrency
IL 2 south – Oregon, Dixon
West end of IL 2 concurrency
IL 2 north (East Blackhawk Drive) – Rockford
East end of IL 2 concurrency
Davis Junction40.865.7 IL 251 – Rochelle, Rockford
Monroe Center43.570.0 I-39 / US 51 – LaSalle, Peru, RockfordExit 111 (I-39)
IL 23 south (Sycamore Road) – Sycamore
West end of IL 23 concurrency
IL 23 north – Marengo
East end of IL 23 concurrency
Pingree Grove73.7118.6

US 20 east (Grant Highway) / IL 47 south – Elgin, Elburn
West end of US 20 / IL 47 concurrency

US 20 west (Grant Highway) / IL 47 north – Marengo, Huntley
East end of US 20 / IL 47 concurrency
KaneWest Dundee83.2133.9 IL 31 (8th Street) – Elgin, Algonquin
East Dundee84.1135.3
IL 68 east (Penny Avenue)
Western terminus of IL 68

IL 25 (Dundee Avenue) to I-90 Toll

IL 59 (Sutton Road) to I-90 Toll
Hoffman EstatesSchaumburg
village line
93.8151.0 IL 58 (Golf Road)

I-290 / IL 53 to I-90 Toll / I-355 Toll / IL 58 – Chicago
Exit 1 (I-290)
Elk Grove Village101.2162.9
IL 83 south (Busse Road)
West end of IL 83 concurrency
IL 83 north (West Oakton Street)
East end of IL 83 concurrency
Des Plaines
I-490 Toll (Western O'Hare Beltway)
Future Interchange

I-90 Toll east (Jane Addams Memorial Tollway) – Chicago
Exit 76 (I-90); no access to I-90 west or from I-90 east
106.0170.6 US 12 / US 45 (Mannheim Road)

I-90 Toll west (Jane Addams Memorial Tollway) – Rockford
Access only
IL 171 south (Cumberland Avenue) – River Grove
Northern terminus of IL 171
I-90 east (Kennedy Expressway) – Rockford
Exit 80 (I-90)
I-90 east (Kennedy Expressway) – Chicago
Exi 81A (I-90)
110.71178.17 IL 43 (Harlem Avenue) – Forest Park, NilesEastern terminus of IL 72
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also


  1. ^ a b Illinois Technology Transfer Center (2007). "T2 GIS Data". Retrieved 2007-11-08.
  2. ^ a b Carlson, Rick. Illinois State Highways Page: Routes 61 thru 80. Last updated March 15, 2006. Retrieved March 24, 2006.
  3. ^ "Irving Park Road Gets Route Change". The Chicago Tribune. March 28, 1968. p. N3.
  4. ^ Google (February 22, 2017). "Overview Map of IL 72" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved February 22, 2017.

External links