An Internet journey led me to West Suburban Living‘s 2015 Best of the West which included this question to readers:
TOWN YOU’D WANT TO LIVE IN (OTHER THAN YOUR OWN)
3rd: TIE: Glen Ellyn and Hinsdale
Other Favorites: Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Geneva, St. Charles and Western Springs
I’m sure there are all sorts of sampling issues here: who exactly reads this magazine and who votes? Yet, this may just provide a hint into how suburbanites in the western suburbs view their communities. All of these suburbs mentioned are majority white and pretty wealthy. They all have downtowns and fairly long histories (they were all founded before post-World War II suburbanization). Generally, they have high scores in quality of life: good schools, parks, good local services, low crime, nice houses, relatively competent local governments.
Sampling issues aside, this may get at the social status ranking of western suburbs. Or, at least, it hints at the geographic and lifestyle aspirations of the voters.