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Establishing Your Business
Business Community

Twenty-five miles north of Chicago's Loop, the City of Highland Park is nestled along beautiful Lake Michigan, at the heart of the metropolitan area's most affluent residential markets. Highland Park is a thriving community with a diverse population of over 29,000, a stable economic base, top-rated schools, and a university-affiliated hospital, offering some of the most unique business opportunities in Lake County.  It is easily accessible from Route 41, I-94, I-294, and is served by Pace Bus and Metra. From one end to the other, Highland Park's business community is diverse and growing, with nine commercial districts conveniently located throughout the City.

The vibrant downtown shopping district is an upscale urban outdoor shopping center filled with one-of-kind boutiques and shops, as well as national chains, and unique restaurants. The City’s eight other business districts range from quaint neighborhoods with retailers, service businesses, and restaurants to frontage along the highway, and lined with car dealerships, service businesses, and national retailers.  

Highland Park businesses enjoy the benefit of an active Office of Business Development, Business and Economic Development CommissionChamber of Commerce and Highland Park Downtown Alliance, which together help to promote a favorable business climate and community by providing leadership for the improvement of economic, civil, cultural and social interests.

“Rich in tradition and culture, the City of Highland Park is a sparkling example of the good life," says the Chicago Tribune.  The City offers excellent business prospects along with a mix of residential tranquility, first-rate cultural and entertainment venues, and the natural beauty of beaches and parks.  It is truly great place to establish a business, and to live, work, and enjoy.

Assistance for New Businesses
The City of Highland Park is committed to assisting entrepreneurs and established business owners interested in opening a business in Highland Park. The Office of Business Development helps business owners and their brokers find an available commercial location, assist them through the regulatory and permit process, and provide ways to eliminate costly delays during the new business start-up period. The Office of Business Development staff serves as the primary local government contact and resource for businesses. They can also provide knowledge of the City's zoning regulations and existing business mix.

For more information or assistance with establishing your business in Highland Park, please contact the Office of Business Development at 847.926.1027. 

Click on the link below to download a comprehensive document summarizing the information necessary for establishing a business in Highland Park.
Establish A Business in Highland Park

Mission Statements of Highland Park Business Development Organizations

City of Highland Park Business & Economic Development Commission
The Business and Economic Development Commission consists of seven voting members: Residents with business expertise, one non-voting ex officio member of the City Council, and one representative of the Chamber of Commerce.

The Business & Economic Development Commission (BEDC) promotes and fosters business and development in the City of Highland Park in an advisory capacity to the City Council.  BEDC prepares and recommends development programs designed to achieve the City’s Master Plan goals in the community’s commercial, industrial, residential and office zoning districts.

For more information, please contact Carolyn Hersch, staff liaison to the Business and Economic Development Commission, at 847.926.1027 or by email.

Highland Park Chamber of Commerce
“Our purpose is to help all member businesses prosper by providing programs and services designed to encourage business development and promotion, networking, education/training and advocacy.” - Chamber

Highland Park Central Business District Property Owners Association
“To plan, improve, enhance and maintain a strong, successful pedestrian oriented downtown that attracts and encourages a vibrant cultural and business district.” - Association

Downtown Highland Park Alliance 
The Downtown Highland Park Alliance is a public/private partnership dedicated to improving the economic vitality of the Highland Park, Illinois Central Business District. Embracing collaboration with businesses, property owners and the City of Highland Park, the Alliance encourages local spending, investment, tourism, and a sense of community through promotion of the Central Business District.
-Alliance Bylaws, Updated 2013

Briergate Business Association District
“The mission of BBAD is to continuously improve the desirability and economic vitality of the Briergate Business District.”
- Association Bylaws