Illinois : Safety by City
- Arlington Heights
- Crystal Lake
- Des Plaines
- East St Louis
- Fairview Heights
- Granite City
- Mount Prospect
- Oak Lawn
- Rock Island
- Tinley Park
Mount Prospect sounds like it’s a city in the Western mountains once a site of a gold mine, and not a suburb of a major area like Chicago, right?
However, it’s one of the communities in the North Shore region of the Chicago metropolitan area.
This is a suburban community shaped a little like a set of stairs.
There is just one hotel in this community with the nearest groups of hotels in Arlington Heights or Glenview.
This city is highly residential with basic shopping amenities, but not a lot of tourist attractions to keep you busy.
What you do get is a safe community with easy access to other parts of Chicagoland.
Downtown Mount Prospect is right where the Metra drops off and picks up.
You can go shopping here, get a pedicure, or dine at one of the many local options.
The city comes to life with music in the summer and plenty of community activities that are fun for the whole family.
The Centennial Green is the community gathering spot for festivals, farmer’s markets, and holiday activities.
It’s nothing fancy, but it’s a great way to safely enjoy the community offerings.
Warnings & Dangers in Mount Prospect
OVERALL RISK : LOW
There's a low risk in Mount Prospect. The violent crime and property crime rates are both exponentially lower than the state and national averages. This community is incredibly safe.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Mount Prospect has its own transportation station. The Metra rail line stops here and you can also take the PACE bus service. Taxis and rideshares are openly available. There's low risk with any option.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
The theft rate here is a risk of one in 157, which is among the lower I've seen in the state of Illinois. You should use extra caution at crowded community events, just to be safe.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
Extreme weather can happen any season here but there's always plenty of warning and resources to learn about those risks. You have severe thunderstorms with tornadoes and flooding potential during every season but winter, and winter brings snow and ice throughout the season. There's a low risk on an average day, but the risk is medium when there's a weather watch or warning. You should always be prepared here for the extreme weather potential of the season.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
The city hasn't had more than 12 robberies in a year going back to at least 2010, so there's a low risk it will happen to you. Keep in mind that risk could change at the other end of the Metra stop, so always research the other parts of the city you'll be visiting as crime statistics change dramatically in some areas.
TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM
Being part of a large population center like Chicago is going to always be a medium risk. There's no reason for Mount Prospect itself to be a target.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
Since this is a highly residential area, the scams reported here are against residents. It's not enough of a tourist attraction to have scams against tourists. You should always be careful, even in a safe community like this, when entering your PIN for a debit card purchase. There have been reports of fraudulent activity like that.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Women are safe to visit here with low risk. Pay attention to your surroundings when you're using the train or rail station after dark, and if you are a runner, you should still do that during daylight hours. Part of keeping a community safe is making safe decisions when visiting.
TAP WATER RISK : LOW
The tap water here comes from Lake Michigan and is treated and inspected before heading to the pipes of the community. The Consumer Confidence Report from Illinois Water shows no violations in the water as of 2020 and all required standards were met.
Safest Places to Visit in Mount Prospect
The Mount Prospect Historical Society has set up several self-guided walking tours of the historic areas of town.
You can find these on their website.
The museum is set up in Dietrich Friedrichs Victorian farmhouse built in the early 1900s.
Downtown Mount Prospect is a great place to stroll through the streets and see the local businesses.
There are some unique boutiques and day spas, as well as bakeries, coffee shops, and cafes.
This is also where the Centennial Green is located if you plan on attending an event there.
During the summer, Big Surf Wave Pool is a great place to cool off and non-residents can access the pool for an additional fee.
The Mount Prospect Golf Club also has an ice rink in the winter, which is a fun activity for the whole family.
While there are more than a dozen parks with trails in Mount Prospect, many of the trails are less than a mile long.
If you want a bigger outdoor area, visit Busse Woods just five miles away.
Here you can rent watercraft like kayaks and paddleboats, go fishing, or explore the Elk Pasture.
Places to Avoid in Mount Prospect
You aren’t going to find a bad neighborhood or part of town in Mount Prospect.
This is a very safe community with residential areas with homes averaging a price of $330,000.
The community is actively engaged here and as I reviewed the latest crime mapping data from the police department (you can do that too on its website!), I saw more reports of “proactive policing” than anything else over the past month.
This means someone reported a suspicious person in a car or walking around a house.
You should avoid assuming all communities in the North Shore region and Chicago area are this safe.
Some are this safe or even more safe, but others come with specific crime concerns.
You can review other neighborhoods on our website to get a bigger picture look at crime.
As someone who grew up at the Missouri/Illinois border, I can tell you there are a lot of people who say Illinois incorrectly.
The “s” is silent.
It’s “Ill-in-noy”, not “Ill-in-noise.”
These are nice Midwestern people who probably won’t correct you, but they will silently judge you if you say it wrong.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Mount Prospect
- That crime mapping system on the police department website is a great tool to get a look at crime data closer to your time of visit. Crime trends can and do easily change in different neighborhoods, and this is a map with data that is no more than 24-hours old.
- If you are staying with loved ones and you have a vehicle that will be parked on the street overnight, you’ll need to get a permit from the city for that. No cars are allowed on the streets overnight from 2:00 am to 6:00 am. This is to keep the streets clean and give enough room for snowplows when necessary. You cannot get permission for overnight parking when more than two inches of snow have fallen.
- This area has a lot of railroad crossings and it’s important to remember that you should not try to “beat the train.” If a crossing is down, don’t drive around the crossing. A train is usually closer and going faster than you judge it to be.
- If you’re riding Metra during your visit, download the Ventra app and buy your fare on your mobile device. There is a day pass available for under $8. There are quiet cars available during the rush hours where you can’t use mobile devices, headphones, or talk loudly.
- If you need to contact the Mount Pleasant Police but don’t need to call 911, the phone number is (847)392-6000. This is a community extremely engaged in helping the police, so your call is welcome.
- There are several locations for parking downtown and after 6 pm and all day on weekends, parking is free. There are free short-term lots that span two to four hours. For paid parking areas, the fee is only $2. Be sure you know your license plate number as this is how cars are tracked in the garage.
- The city website issues a Village Newsletter every month. This is the best way to find out about events happening during your time of visit.
- If you are going to fish while you’re here, you’ll need a license from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. You can purchase this online.
- Plan ahead when you’re driving because outside of winter there is a lot of road construction that happens. This is to fix or resurface streets that the winter weather might’ve beaten up. You can see a list of upcoming road projects on the city website, or download the Traffix Chicago app to get updated traffic and road delays during your stay.
- You can legally use recreational marijuana in Illinois, and that includes Mount Pleasant, but you can also quickly break that law if you don’t know the specifics. You can’t use it in any public place or in your vehicle. There are even restrictions on how you can transport it in the car. Please review the intricate details of the law before any use.
So... How Safe Is Mount Prospect Really?
The average national crime rate is 399 violent crimes per 100,000 people.
In Mount Prospect, it’s 45 per 100,000.
In Illinois, the average violent crime rate is 4.18 per 1,000 and in Mount Prospect, it’s 0.46.
This city has only had three homicides since 2010 and averages less than 12 robberies per year.
Even the rate is half the national average.
Generally, in cities that are middle to the upper class with low violent crime rates, you’ll see a surge in property crimes since there is more expensive stuff to steal.
Not the case here, however.
Property crimes are half the state and national average.
Any way you look at Mount Prospect, the crime rates are low.
It’s not immune from crime happening and you shouldn’t let your guard down anywhere in the Chicago area.
How Does Mount Prospect Compare?
|Niagara Falls (Canada)||87|
|Buenos Aires (Argentina)||60|
- Visas - You will need a Visa to get through Customs when you arrive and that's it. After that, your passport will be the ID needed.
- Currency - You can only use the U.S. Dollar here. Everything, including mass transit, can be paid for on a mobile device or with a credit card. You really don't need to carry cash here.
- Weather - You'll want to plan for potential extremes in all seasons, especially brutally cold winter and really muggy summers. You should bring waterproof shoes year-round since flooding or snowfall can make wet shoes and socks uncomfortable.
- Airports - O'Hare International Airport is just 10 miles south of Mount Prospect and Midway International Airport is 36 miles away, but plan for that drive to take an hour.
- Travel Insurance - You'll want travel insurance for a place that gets such weather extremes and the weather here can change quickly.
Mount Prospect Weather Averages (Temperatures)
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