Located on Roger Williams Avenue between Green Bay Road and Judson Avenue, the charming and quaint Ravinia Business District is home to diverse restaurants, unique retailers, service businesses, medical providers, and other office users. The proximity of the Ravinia Metra train station and the renowned Ravinia Festival - a world-class summer venue for the performing arts that draws more than 500,000 attendees over an 87-night season from May until late September - creates wonderful opportunities for unique businesses.
For information concerning available properties in Highland Park, please contact the Office of Business Development at 847.926.1027
Come meet the merchants and learn a little bit about the businesses that make up the quaint, artistic and friendly Ravinia District of Highland Park.
Meet the Merchant Monday Video Series
Ravinia Business District Streetscape Improvement Project
On Thursday, March 23, 2023, the City of Highland Park and its consultant Lamar Johnson Collaborative held two stakeholder meetings as part of the Ravinia Business District Streetscape Improvements Project. Meetings centered around the prioritization of future streetscape investments in the Ravinia Business District. Participants also provided direction on the location and design of a bike shelter, scheduled to be installed before the end of fall 2023. The webinar recording and presentation slides are available. Feedback may be shared with the team at Lamar Johnson Collaborative by emailing email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Ravinia Business District is home to new street lights and benches as part of a streetscape project funded through the Ravinia Special Service Area 17. The Street Lighting Plan is designed to provide even lighting throughout the corridor and comply with the City’s recent right-of-way lighting standards as well as dark skies policies.
The location of the benches was determined based on the recommendation of the City’s project consultant. The primary consideration to face the benches toward the buildings and not the street is for public safety purposes. Placing the benches with their backs toward the traffic on the street will discourage individuals from moving from the bench into traffic, which is a safety concern. The bench orientation is also intended to accommodate interaction among people visiting businesses and pedestrians on the sidewalk. Learn more about the Ravinia Business District streetscape project
Special Service Area 17
The City Council established the City of Highland Park, Illinois Special Service Area 17 (SSA 17) to enhance the quality of the business and community environment and increase the economic impact of the Ravinia Business District, effective January 1, 2014. Respectively, the City has renewed SSA 17 for the following consecutive three-year terms:
A Special Service Area is a taxing mechanism that can be used to fund a wide range of special or additional services and/or physical improvements in a defined geographic area within a municipality.
The annual budget/levy is $90,000 which will cover the costs of marketing, public relations, events, banners and expanded beautification in the Ravinia Business District.
SSA 17's boundaries include commercial and mixed-use rental properties in the B2-RW and RM2 zoning districts. SSA 17 does not include residential condominiums with separate real estate tax PINS that are within the SSA's boundaries, to the extent allowed by law.
The Ravinia Business District SSA 17 Advisory Group guides SSA 17’s activities. The City’s Business Development Manager manages SSA 17.
SSA 17 has produced several popular events. Harvest & Harmony Fest, which featured food and music, was held in the fall of 2015 and 2016 to attract visitors to the District. The two-day event attracted more than 2,000 attendees the first year and more than 4,500 the second year.
In 2016, the SSA hosted a well-attended weekly summertime Artisan Market featuring more than 20 artisan food, craft and beverage vendors, with live music.
In 2017, the City, on behalf of SSA 17, and Bensidoun USA, initiated Food Truck Thursdays with Music in the Park, 4:30 PM – Dusk, June – September, and is now in its sixth year. The event attracts 1,500 residents and visitors from near and far weekly.
Food Truck Thursdays and Music in the Park is sponsored by the Ravinia District Special Service Area 17 property owners and overseen by the City’s Business Development Manager. Bensidoun USA coordinates Food Truck Thursdays, and Life Rhythms coordinates Music in the Park. The Highland Park Community Foundation also sponsors music in the Park. More information about Food Truck Thursdays can be found HERE.