Streator is a dynamic city located less than 100 miles Southwest of Chicago, near key transport grids. Served by 3 railroads (2 of them Class 1), Streator is also in the middle of the Interstate Highway triangle formed by I-39, I-55 and I-80.
Through the years, Streator’s development has remained relatively compact, and it is easy to move around the town. The city enjoys a low cost-of-living, making it more affordable to live and retire in Streator than in most other places in northern Illinois. Safer, and with substantially less traffic congestion and shorter commute times than in large metropolitan areas, Streator sports small-town living with the need to stay economically vibrant.
Streator was once a city of many ethnic neighborhoods—Slovak, Polish, German, Italian, Welsh and others, with residents who were recruited for, or attracted to, different mining and manufacturing opportunities. While vestiges of this aspect of the city’s past remain, and the city is more integrated in the modern era, it remains proud of its heritage as the home to North America’s first Slovak Catholic Church, and first Slovak Lutheran Church.
Streator is a place where entrepreneurs, innovators, artists, and scientists can all thrive. It is the birthplace (in 1913) of Burt “Butch” Baskin who, after graduating from Streator High School and the University of Illinois became an entrepreneur, founded an ice-cream business and merged it with Irv Robbins’ similar business to form Baskin-Robbins. It is also the birthplace of Clyde Tombaugh, the discoverer of the planet Pluto. Clarence Mulford, author of Hop-a-Long Cassidy books, grew up in Streator.
Today, the city of Streator supports small business start-ups and local innovators with several economic development and technical assistance programs, including a small business incubator housed in the former Illinois National Guard Armory on West Bridge Street. For more information about the Streator Incubator, go to their Facebook page @ https://www.facebook.com/streatorinc.
While some small neighborhood businesses remain, most of the city’s retail activity is concentrated in two locations: 1) along State Highway 23 between the Norfolk-Southern Railroad tracks and the northern city limits, and 2) in the central business district, from Westgate to the BNSF Railway, along Illinois Route 18.
Two regional hospitals operate satellite facilities in Streator: OSF (Order of St. Francis) and Illinois Valley Community Hospital. The OSF-Center for Health in Streator is a new healthcare campus that champions rural, telemedicine, wellness programs, 24/7 emergency care and comprehensive out-patient services linked to OSF facilities in Ottawa, Pontiac, Peoria and Bloomington.
Streator, Illinois by the numbers:
City Population: 13,710
Zip Code: 61364
Elevation: 625 ft. above sea level
Longitude: 88° 50' W
Latitude: 41° 7' N