The Chicago metropolitan area, or Chicagoland, is the metropolitan area that includes the city of Chicago, Illinois, and its suburbs. With an estimated population of 9.4 million people, it is the third largest metropolitan area in the United States.The Chicago metropolitan area is one of the world’s largest and most diversified economies, with more than four million employees and generating an annual gross regional product (GRP) of over $561 billion. The region is home to more than 400 major corporate headquarters, including 31 in the Fortune 500.There are several definitions of the area, including the area defined by the United States Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as the Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL-IN-WI Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), and the area under the jurisdiction of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) (a metropolitan planning organization).DefinitionsMetropolitan statistical areaThe Chicago Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) was originally designated by the United States Census Bureau in 1950. It comprised the Illinois counties of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake and Will, along with Lake County in Indiana. As surrounding counties saw an increase in their population densities and the number of their residents employed within Cook County, they met Census criteria to be added to the MSA. The Chicago MSA, now defined as the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI Metropolitan Statistical Area, is the third largest MSA by population in the United States. The 2015 census estimate for the MSA was 9,532,569, a decline from 9,543,893 in the 2014 census estimate. This loss of population has been attributed to taxes, political issues, and other factors.
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