Glencoe, 22 miles north of the Loop, began as an experiment in building the "perfect suburb". Alexander Hammond, a retired physician and farmer from Rockford, led the quest to create a village with parks, homes and streets following the natural and beautiful topography of the land. Residents would agree that the experiment was an unmitigated success. The principles that shaped Glencoe are still evident today. Strict zoning helps to maintain the spaciousness of the community, which reminds one more of a forest preserve than a suburb of a major metropolitan area. The central business district of the village is dotted with small boutiques, cafes and a variety of professional services. It is shielded from many of the trappings of urban life (expressways, for example) by forest preserves, the Chicago Botanic Gardens and dense growths of trees.
Outdoor activities are popular in the community, which boasts a variety of activities to enjoy. Glencoe is also home to the Chicago Botanic Gardens, which is maintained by the Cook County Forest Preserve. A popular Chicago area attraction, the Gardens feature many special features during the year and is the site of many special events and weddings.
The village has a mix of housing styles that include traditional two-stories, Tudors, Colonials and Georgians. The Village of Glencoe has many historical and architecturally significant structures and is the home of the only known bridge to be designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The Glencoe Historic Preservation Commission, established in December, 1990, is responsible for public education about preservation; identification of landmark sites and structures; and advisory review of proposed alterations to landmarks and historic sites.
Students attend Central Elementary School district 35,which is known for its language arts and fine arts programs, as well as its student-published magazine. Teenagers attend nationally recognized New Trier High School district 203 in neighboring Winnetka.
Drivers have easy access to the Edens Expressway (I-94), and drive time to the Loop is 30 minutes. O'Hare Airport is 30 minutes away, while Midway is a 50-minute drive. Metra trains reach the Loop in 29 minutes by express and 38 minutes on the locals.