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Map of Illinois highlighting the Champaign-Urbana MSA

The Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Statistical Area, also known as Champaign-Urbana and known colloquially by some as Chambana, is a metropolitan area in east central Illinois. Composed of three counties (Champaign, Ford, and Piatt), the area had a population of 210,275 at the 2000 census[1] and anchored by the principal cities of Champaign and Urbana. Students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are included in this estimate of residents although they are typically discounted from the official city census as they are not permanent residents.

Champaign-Urbana is home to University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the flagship campus of the University of Illinois system.

Newsweek has named Champaign-Urbana as one of the top ten tech cities (outside of the Silicon Valley)[2]. Champaign-Urbana also ranked tenth as one of the top twenty-five green cities in the United States, in a survey made by Country Home Magazine.[3]

Contents

Demographics overview

With a total area of 1,924 mi² (4,944 km²) and a population of 210,275, the population density was 109.3 people per mi² (42.53/km²) in 2000.

Colleges and universities

Health

The Champaign-Urbana Metro area is home to two hospitals, the Carle Foundation Hospital, and Provena Covenant Medical Center, with a combined total of over 550 physicians. Both hospitals are located less than a mile apart on University Avenue in Urbana. Both hospitals provide various specialized services, and Carle Hospital currently has a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, a Level I Trauma Center, and a medical helicopter service. Both hospitals are currently having to face the fact that their tax-exempt statuses are being revoked by the State of Illinois.[4]

Carle Clinic Association maintains several locations next to the hospital as well as other locations within C-U and other East Central Illinois cities. Christie Clinic, another smaller multispeciality group practice, is headquartered in downtown Champaign. They are largely affiliated with Provena Covenant Medical Center but are not as closely linked as their Carle counterparts.

Both hospitals and clinics are affiliated with the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Urbana, part of the larger University of Illinois College of Medicine, which has campuses in Chicago, Peoria, Rockford, and Urbana. A teaching presence is at both hospitals, although the facilities are somewhat more extensive at Carle Foundation Hospital.

Arts and culture

The Virginia Theatre in Downtown Champaign.

The Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area is home to many theatres. The University is home to three theatre venues; Foellinger Auditorium, Assembly Hall and The Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. While the Assembly Hall is primarily a campus basketball and concert arena, the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts is considered to be one of the nation's top venues for performance and hosts over 400 performances annually. Built in 1969, the Krannert Center's facilities cover over four acres (16,000 m²) of land, and features four theatres and an amphitheatre.

The Historic Virginia Theatre in downtown Champaign is a public venue owned by the city of Champaign and administered by the Champaign Park District. It is best known for hosting Roger Ebert's Film Festival which occurs annually during the last week of April. It features a variety of performances from community theatre with the Champaign Urbana Theatre Company, to post box-office showings of popular films, current artistic films, live musical performances (both orchestral and popular), and other types of shows. First commissioned in 1921, it originally served as a venue for both film and live performances, but became primarily a movie house in the 1950s. Occasional live events were held during the 1970s and 1980s, including a live production of "Oh, Calcutta" and performances by George Benson, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Missing Persons, and the Indigo Girls. GKC Corporation closed the Virginia as a movie house on February 13, 1992, with the final regular film being Steve Martin's "Father of the Bride". The theatre once again began holding regular live performances when it was leased to local gospel singer David Wyper in 1992. The Champaign-Urbana Theatre Company was formed to perform major musicals and opened their first season with "The Music Man" that June. Control passed to the Virginia Theatre group in 1996 and the theatre became a non-profit public venue. The Champaign Park District assumed control of the facilities in 2000. Its original Wurlitzer theatre pipe organ has been maintained by Warren York since 1988 and is still played regularly.

The Art Theater in downtown Champaign began as Champaign's first theatre devoted to movies, the Park, in 1912, and is a small venue showing films not normally playing at the box office. The theatre is the only single-screen movie theatre with daily operation as a movie theatre in Champaign-Urbana. The Virginia, which hosts Roger Ebert's Annual Overlooked Film Festival, is also single-screen, but only opens for special showings and events. Rapp and Rapp's 1914 Orpheum Theatre closed in the mid-1980s and now houses a children's science museum.

Parkland College in Champaign features a small theatre called the Parkland College Theatre and a planetarium called the William M. Staerkel Planetarium.

The area has originated a great deal of musical talent, starting with REO Speedwagon, Head East, Dan Fogelberg and including HUM, Poster Children, Hardvark, The Moon Seven Times, Braid, Castor, National Skyline, Absinthe Blind, Headlights, The Living Blue and The Beauty Shop. Some lesser known artists like Alma Afrobeat Ensemble, Zirafa and Spinnerty, d-Lo, Bozak, Melodic Scribes, DJ Librarian, UC Hiphop, Saint Syke, and Zmick are also worthy of note on simply a local scale.

The cities now host Pygmalion Music Festival on an annual basis, presented by the Nicodemus Agency and Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Past performers include Iron and Wine, The Books, YACHT, Rjd2, Yo La Tengo, Black Mountain, Asobi Seksu, Times New Viking, of Montreal, Danielson, Man Man, Okkervil River, Andrew Bird, Questlove, and more. The 2010 festival is scheduled for September 22–25.

Media

  • Besides many commercial radio and TV stations, Champaign-Urbana has several academic, homegrown and not-for-profit media outlets.
  • WRFU-LP is a low power community radio station owned and operated by Radio Free Urbana. The station was built by hundreds of volunteers from the region and around the country in November 2005 at the ninth Prometheus Radio Project barnraising. WRFU broadcasts music, news, public affairs, and political activism (usually left-leaning) to listeners at 104.5FM.
  • Illini Media, located at 5th and Green in campustown, is home to the college's alternative radio station WPGU 107.1. The Illini Media Building is also home to the Daily Illini, the student-run daily newspaper, and Buzz Weekly which has quickly become a popular source for arts & entertainment news in the Champaign-Urbana area.
  • Smile Politely, an online magazine focused on arts, entertainment and alternative news, opened in 2007 and is seen as the successor to previous print efforts like The Octopus, and The Hub Weekly.

Sports

While greater Champaign-Urbana does not feature any professional sports teams, the University of Illinois fields many teams which compete in the Big Ten Conference. Two large sports centers (Memorial Stadium and Assembly Hall) are located in the south-east portion of Champaign. Memorial Stadium is a football arena where the Fighting Illini football team plays, and Assembly Hall is the home of the highly-successful Fighting Illini basketball team. In addition, the NFL's Chicago Bears played in the Memorial Stadium for the 2002 season while Soldier Field was being modernized and refurbished.

The city of Champaign has been working with the Frontier League to create a privately-owned professional baseball team. The team was scheduled to start playing in the 2009 baseball season, but was delayed in 2008 to the 2010 season at the earliest.[5] Since then however, there has been no development on the matter.

The University of Illinois will host the 2010 NCAA tennis championship. The university is currently constructing a new outdoor tennis stadium next to the Atkins Tennis Center and softball field just south of Florida Avenue in Urbana. The Illini Tennis team won the 2003 NCAA tennis championships and is highly ranked nationally.

Famous people

The following people are from the Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area or attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign*:

*It is a common misconception that Hugh Hefner was born in Champaign-Urbana. However, sources list him as being born in Chicago, though he did attend the University of Illinois in Urbana.[1]

Tourism and recreation

Museums

  • Champaign County Historical Museum Located in the Historic Cattle Bank built in 1858. Features exhibits on the history of the area and the midwest as a whole.
  • Chanute Aerospace Museum (Homepage). Showcases Illinois' role in aviation, featuring several hangars of planes on exhibit (Located in nearby Rantoul).
  • Early American Museum (Homepage). Features historic exhibits on life in the early midwest.
  • Krannert Art Museum (Homepage). Art Museum featuring both modern and classical art. Many changing exhibits.
  • Orpheum Children's Science Museum (Homepage). A hands on science museum for children.
  • Spurlock Museum (Homepage). Over 46,000 artifacts on display focusing around human culture and history throughout the world. Features some of the largest exhibits on Native North American and South American history in the nation.

Parks and recreation

  • Champaign Park District features many parks, hiking trails, and biking trails in the city of Champaign.
  • Urbana Park District includes exercise and biking trails, Crystal Lake, a sculpture park, and other public facilities in the city of Urbana.
  • Robert Allerton Park a private estate donated to the University consisting of a large manor house (now a conference center), formal gardens, and natural woodlands and prairie. Open to the public.

Public transportation

Outlying suburbs

A dozen outlying suburban areas are dependent on Champaign and Urbana for economic and political support. The largest of these areas are the towns of Savoy, Mahomet, St. Joseph, and arguably Monticello as well. Most of these cities and towns lie in Champaign County. These areas are populated primarily to partially with commuters who work in Champaign or Urbana, and choose to live outside of the city. Because many of these small towns partially consist of many highly paid professors, doctors and technology professionals who work for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the many clinics and hospitals in town, or in the Research Park, these areas often have a higher median household income than Champaign or Urbana.

The suburban part of the Metropolitan area is constructed in a way that is untraditional. Instead of a sprawling suburban skirt that encircles the urban area, the urban area is surrounded by farmland, with small to medium sized suburban villages consisting mainly of residential areas dotting the landscape. Most of these villages are home to over 1,000 to people, though some have as many as over 5,000 residents. Although many of these towns were originally developed as farming communities long before Champaign-Urbana became a regional powerhouse, they are now very affluent due to the high incomes of the residents and the resulting high tax revenue collected by the village. This movement of tax dollars from Champaign and Urbana to their dependent areas is a point of constant strife between the cities and the suburbs.

Although the "hub-and-spoke" system has defined the 'suburban' area of Champaign-Urbana for some time, new "cookie-cutter" type housing developments are beginning to appear around the skirts of the area. Notably large neighborhoods are currently under construction as far as around Rising Road west of I-57 in Champaign and north and east of Willard Airport in both Champaign and Savoy. Some land development has even appeared to start north of I-74 in both Champaign and Urbana. On the far east (Urbana) area of the city, new business developments such as a Meijer, a planned Menards and a commercial center with many restaurants and services have broken ground for more suburban housing, although the issue of land development will undoubtedly be hotly contested in local government.

Skyline

Recently, Champaign and Urbana has seen its skyline going up. At the University of Illinois campus, Memorial Stadium has gone under major renovation and construction of new stands, clubs and luxury suites. In Campustown, a new 24-story highrise apartment building (locally known as the Whopper) has gone under construction. The Whopper is three stories higher than the older 21 story Tower at Third. The Whopper will also see another planned tower (Phase Two) rise nearly as high next to it at the corner of Fourth Street and Green Street, but plans are still under development. The Burnham 310 Project, at 18 stories, will be finished in the fall of 2008 and includes student luxury apartments and a County Market grocery store. Burnham 310 will soon have street level condos under construction, which will be part of the new Burnham District, which will connect downtown Champaign to Campustown. In downtown, the new 9 story M2 on Neil project is under construction. M2 will have offices, retail, and condos. An even bigger building with 62 condos is being planned and will sit next to M2. A new boutique hotel is also being planned. These, among other developments, are giving the city a more urban feel.

Notes

  1. ^ Population in Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas Ranked by 2000 Population for the United States and Puerto Rico: 1990 and 2000. U.S. Census Bureau. December 30, 2003. Accessed November 20, 2007.
  2. ^ Newsweek: The Hot New Tech Cities
  3. ^ CountryHome.com: 2007 Best Green Cities
  4. ^ The News-Gazette.com: State removes Carle's property tax exemption
  5. ^ Minor League Team in C-U Delayed IlliniHQ.com. September 3, 2008. Accessed October 28, 2009.

External links

Suburbs and Dependent Areas of Champaign-Urbana
Allerton | Augerville | Bondville | Fulls | Kenwood | Lake of the Woods | Mahomet | Mayview | Mira | Ogden | Rantoul | Rising | Philo | St. Joseph | Savoy | Staley | Tolono | Tipton | Wilbur Heights


The Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Statistical Area, also known as Champaign-Urbana and known colloquially by some as Chambana, is a metropolitan area in east central Illinois. Composed of three counties (Champaign, Ford, and Piatt), the area had a population of 210,275 at the 2000 census[1] and anchored by the principal cities of Champaign and Urbana. Students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are included in this estimate of residents although they are typically discounted from the official city census as they are not permanent residents.

Champaign-Urbana is home to University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the flagship campus of the University of Illinois system.

Newsweek has named Champaign-Urbana as one of the top ten tech cities (outside of the Silicon Valley)Template:Fact. Champaign-Urbana also ranked tenth as one of the top twenty-five green cities in the United States, in a survey made by Country Home Magazine.[2]

Contents

Demographics overview

With a total area of 1,924 mi² (4,944 km²) and a population of 210,275, the population density was 109.3 people per mi² (42.53/km²) in 2000.

Colleges and universities

Health

The Champaign-Urbana Metro area is home to two hospitals, the Carle Foundation Hospital, and Provena Covenant Medical Center, with a combined total of over 550 physicians. Both hospitals are located less than a mile apart on University Avenue in Urbana. Both hospitals provide various specialized services, and Carle Hospital currently has a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, a Level I Trauma Center, and a medical helicopter service. Both hospitals are currently having to face the fact that their tax-exempt statuses are being revoked by the State of Illinois.[3]

Carle Clinic Association maintains several locations next to the hospital as well as other locations within C-U and other East Central Illinois cities. Christie Clinic, another smaller multispeciality group practice, is headquartered in downtown Champaign. They are largely affiliated with Provena Covenant Medical Center but are not as closely linked as their Carle counterparts.

Both hospitals and clinics are affiliated with the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Urbana, part of the larger University of Illinois College of Medicine, which has campuses in Chicago, Peoria, Rockford, and Urbana. A teaching presence is at both hospitals, although the facilities are somewhat more extensive at Carle Foundation Hospital.

Arts and culture

The Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area is home to many theatres. The University is home to three theatre venues; Foellinger Auditorium, Assembly Hall and The Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. While the Assembly Hall is primarily a campus basketball and concert arena, the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts is considered to be one of the nation's top venues for performance and hosts over 400 performances annually. Built in 1969, the Krannert Center's facilities cover over four acres (16,000 m²) of land, and features four theatres and an amphitheatre.

The Historic Virginia Theatre in downtown Champaign is a public venue owned by the city of Champaign and administered by the Champaign Park District. It is best known for hosting Roger Ebert's Overlooked Film Festival which occurs annually during the last week of April. It features a variety of performances from community theatre with the Champaign Urbana Theatre Company, to post box-office showings of popular films, current artistic films, live musical performances (both orchestral and popular), and other types of shows. First commissioned in 1921, it originally served as a venue for both film and live performances, but became primarily a movie house in the 1950s. Occasional live events were held during the 1970s and 1980s, including a live production of "Oh, Calcutta" and performances by George Benson, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Missing Persons, and the Indigo Girls. GKC Corporation closed the Virginia as a movie house on February 13, 1992, with the final regular film being Steve Martin's "Father of the Bride". The theatre once again began holding regular live performances when it was leased to local gospel singer David Wyper in 1992. The Champaign-Urbana Theatre Company was formed to perform major musicals and opened their first season with "The Music Man" that June. Control passed to the Virginia Theatre group in 1996 and the theatre became a non-profit public venue. The Champaign Park District assumed control of the facilities in 2000. Its original Wurlitzer theatre pipe organ has been maintained by Warren York since 1988 and is still played regularly.

Boardman's Art Theater in downtown Champaign began as Champaign's first theatre devoted to movies, the Park, in 1912, and is a small venue showing films not normally playing at the box office. The theatre is the only single-screen movie theatre with daily operation as a movie theatre in Champaign-Urbana. The Virginia, which hosts Roger Ebert's Annual Overlooked Film Festival, is also single-screen, but only opens for special showings and events. Rapp and Rapp's 1914 Orpheum Theatre closed in the mid-1980s and now houses a children's science museum.

Parkland College in Champaign features a small theatre called the Parkland College Theatre and a planetarium called the William M. Staerkel Planetarium.

The area has originated a great deal of musical talent, starting with REO Speedwagon, Head East and Dan Fogelberg and including HUM, Poster Children, Hardvark, The Moon Seven Times, Braid, Castor, National Skyline, Absinthe Blind, Headlights, The Living Blue and The Beauty Shop. Some lesser known artists like Alma Afrobeat Ensemble, Zirafa and Spinnerty, d-Lo, Bozak, Melodic Scribes, DJ Librarian, UC Hiphop, and Zmick are also worthy of note on simply a local scale.

The cities now host Pygmalion Music Festival on an annual basis, presented by the Nicodemus Agency and Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Past performers include Yo La Tengo, Black Mountain, Asobi Seksu, Times New Viking, of Montreal, Danielson, Man Man, Okkervil River, Andrew Bird, Questlove, and more.

Media

  • Besides many commercial radio and TV stations, Champaign-Urbana has several academic, homegrown and not-for-profit media outlets.
  • WRFU-LP is a low power community radio station owned and operated by Radio Free Urbana. The station was built by hundreds of volunteers from the region and around the country in November 2005 at the ninth Prometheus Radio Project barnraising. WRFU broadcasts music, news, public affairs, and political activism (usually left-leaning) to listeners at 104.5FM.
  • Illini Media, located at 5th and Green in campustown, is home to the college's alternative radio station WPGU 107.1. The Illini Media Building is also home to the Daily Illini, the student-run daily newspaper, and Buzz Weekly which has quickly become a popular source for arts & entertainment news in the Champaign-Urbana area.
  • Smile Politely, an online magazine focused on arts, entertainment and alternative news, opened in 2007 and is seen as the successor to previous print efforts like The Octopus, and The Hub Weekly.

Sports

While greater Champaign-Urbana does not feature any professional sports teams, the University of Illinois fields many teams which compete in the Big Ten Conference. Two large sports centers (Memorial Stadium and Assembly Hall) are located in the south-east portion of Champaign. Memorial Stadium is a football arena where the Fighting Illini football team plays, and Assembly Hall is the home of the highly-successful Fighting Illini basketball team. In addition, the NFL's Chicago Bears played in the Memorial Stadium for the 2002 season while Soldier Field was being modernized and refurbished.

The city of Champaign has been working with the Frontier League to create a privately-owned professional baseball team. The team was scheduled to start playing in the 2009 baseball season, but there has been no development on that since initial discussions were held on the matter.

The University of Illinois will host the 2010 NCAA tennis championship. The university is currently constructing a new outdoor tennis stadium next to the Atkins Tennis Center and softball field just south of Florida Avenue in Urbana. The Illini Tennis team won the 2003 NCAA tennis championships and is highly ranked nationally.

Famous people

The following people are from the Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area or attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign*:

*It is a common misconception that Hugh Hefner was born in Champaign-Urbana. However, sources list him as being born in Chicago, but he did attend the University of Illinois in Urbana.[1]

Tourism and recreation

Museums

  • Champaign County Historical Museum Located in the Historic Cattle Bank built in 1858. Features exhibits on the history of the area and the midwest as a whole.
  • Chanute Aerospace Museum (Homepage). Showcases Illinois' role in aviation, featuring several hangars of planes on exhibit (Located in nearby Rantoul).
  • Early American Museum (Homepage). Features historic exhibits on life in the early midwest.
  • Krannert Art Museum (Homepage). Art Museum featuring both modern and classical art. Many changing exhibits.
  • Orpheum Children's Science Museum (Homepage). A hands on science museum for children.
  • Spurlock Museum (Homepage). Over 46,000 artifacts on display focusing around human culture and history throughout the world. Features some of the largest exhibits on Native North American and South American history in the nation.

Parks and recreation

  • Champaign Park District features many parks, hiking trails, and biking trails in the city of Champaign.
  • Urbana Park District includes exercise and biking trails, Crystal Lake, a sculpture park, and other public facilities in the city of Urbana.
  • Robert Allerton Park a private estate donated to the University consisting of a large manor house (now a conference center), formal gardens, and natural woodlands and prairie. Open to the public.

Public transportation

Outlying suburbs

A dozen outlying suburban areas are dependent on Champaign and Urbana for economic and political support. The largest of these areas are the towns of Savoy, Mahomet, St. Joseph, and arguably Monticello as well. Most of these cities and towns lie in Champaign County. These areas are populated primarily to partially with commuters who work in Champaign or Urbana, and choose to live outside of the city. Because many of these small towns partially consist of many highly paid professors, doctors and technology professionals who work for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the many clinics and hospitals in town, or in the Research Park, these areas often have a higher median household income than Champaign or Urbana.

The suburban part of the Metropolitan area is constructed in a way that is untraditional. Instead of a sprawling suburban skirt that encircles the urban area, the urban area is surrounded by farmland, with small to medium sized suburban villages consisting mainly of residential areas dotting the landscape. Most of these villages are home to over 1,000 to people, though some have as many as over 5,000 residents. Although many of these towns were originally developed as farming communities long before Champaign-Urbana became a regional powerhouse, they are now very affluent due to the high incomes of the residents and the resulting high tax revenue collected by the village. This movement of tax dollars from Champaign and Urbana to their dependent areas is a point of constant strife between the cities and the suburbs.

Although the "hub-and-spoke" system has defined the 'suburban' area of Champaign-Urbana for some time, new "cookie-cutter" type housing developments are beginning to appear around the skirts of the area. Notably large neighborhoods are currently under construction as far as around Rising Road west of I-57 in Champaign and north and east of Willard Airport in both Champaign and Savoy. Some land development has even appeared to start north of I-74 in both Champaign and Urbana. On the far east (Urbana) area of the city, new business developments such as a Meijer, a planned Menards and a commercial center with many restaurants and services have broken ground for more suburban housing, although the issue of land development will undoubtedly be hotly contested in local government.

Skyline

Recently, Champaign and Urbana has seen its skyline going up. At the University of Illinois campus, Memorial Stadium has gone under major renovation and construction of new stands, clubs and luxury suites. In Campustown, a new 24-story highrise apartment building (locally known as the Whopper) has gone under construction. The Whopper is three stories higher than the older 21 story Tower at Third. The Whopper will also see another planned tower (Phase Two) rise nearly as high next to it at the corner of Fourth Street and Green Street, but plans are still under development. The Burnham 310 Project, at 18 stories, will be finished in the fall of 2008 and includes student luxury apartments and a County Market grocery store. Burnham 310 will soon have street level condos under construction, which will be part of the new Burnham District, which will connect downtown Champaign to Campustown. In downtown, the new 9 story M2 on Neil project is under construction. M2 will have offices, retail, and condos. An even bigger building with 62 condos is being planned and will sit next to M2. A new boutique hotel is also being planned. These, among other developments, are giving the city a more urban feel.

Notes

  1. Population in Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas Ranked by 2000 Population for the United States and Puerto Rico: 1990 and 2000. U.S. Census Bureau. December 302003. Accessed November 202007.
  2. CountryHome.com: 2007 Best Green Cities
  3. The News-Gazette.com: State removes Carle's property tax exemption

External links

Suburbs and Dependent Areas of Champaign-Urbana
Allerton | Augerville | Bondville | Fulls | Kenwood | Lake of the Woods | Mahomet | Mayview | Mira | Ogden | Rantoul | Rising | Philo | St. Joseph | Savoy | Staley | Tolono | Tipton | Wilber Heights









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