|Maintained by IDOT and CDOT|
|Length||110.71 mi (178.17 km)|
|West end||in Lanark|
| / in Monroe Center|
/ in Hampshire
/ in Schaumburg
in Des Plaines
/ in Des Plaines
|East end||in Chicago|
|Counties||Carroll, Ogle, DeKalb, Kane, Cook|
Illinois Route 72 is an east–west state road in northern Illinois. It runs from the intersection with Illinois Route 73 north of Lanark east to Illinois Route 43 (Harlem Avenue) in Chicago. This is a distance of 110.71 miles (178.2 km).
Illinois 72 is called Higgins Road for most of its length in the Chicago area, and has been redirected in parts of the area to accommodate for new features. Near Rosemont, the road has been shifted to make way for O'Hare International Airport — further east, parts of the road have been moved to make room for the Northwest Tollway (Interstate 90). The road serves as a major six-lane thoroughfare for several western suburbs, including Schaumburg, Elk Grove Village, and Hoffman Estates.
Illinois 72 runs concurrently for one block with Illinois Route 83 in Elk Grove Township, and Illinois Route 47 and U.S. Highway 20 by Starks, an unincorporated village approximately 60 miles (97 km) from Chicago. The latter is a Wrong-way concurrency, where one can be driving both west on Illinois 72 and east on U.S. 20 at the same time. West from Chicago, Illinois 72 largely parallels Interstate 90 until Starks, crossing over and under the highway six times without an intersection. On a larger scale, it is the main east–west artery to Chicago between Interstate 90 and Illinois Route 64.
It serves the towns and cities of, from west to east, Lanark, Shannon, Forreston, Leaf River, Byron, Stillman Valley, Kirkland, Kingston, Genoa, Hampshire, Gilberts, Sleepy Hollow, West Dundee, East Dundee, South Barrington, Hoffman Estates, Schaumburg, Elk Grove Village, Des Plaines, Rosemont, and Chicago. Higgins Road/Higgins Avenue continues east-southeast from Harlem Avenue in Chicago to Milwaukee Avenue near Lawrence Avenue.
Route 72 is one of seven state roads to enter the city of Chicago. It was once part of the Galena-Chicago Stagecoach Trail.
SBI Route 72 originally ran from Lanark to Starks. It was extended east in 1937 and 1938 to East Dundee, and then to Chicago. In 1968, the designation of IL 72 was truncated back to IL 43 (Harlem Avenue), lopping off 10.5 miles (16.9 km). In 1982, it was shortened again, this time to Illinois Route 73.
|Carroll||Lanark||0.00||0.00||- Lanark, Pearl City||Western terminus of IL 72|
|Ogle||Forreston||10.0||16.1||north - Freeport||West end of IL 26 concurrency|
|13.9||22.4||south (First Avenue) - Dixon||East end of IL 26 concurrency|
|Byron||29.6||47.6||south - Oregon, Dixon||West end of IL 2 concurrency|
|30.9||49.7||north (East Blackhawk Drive) - Rockford||East end of IL 2 concurrency|
|Davis Junction||40.8||65.7||- Rochelle, Rockford|
|Monroe Center||43.5||70.0||/ - LaSalle, Peru, Rockford||Exit 111 (I-39)|
|DeKalb||Genoa||61.7||99.3||south (Sycamore Road) - Sycamore||West end of IL 23 concurrency|
|63.6||102.4||north - Marengo||East end of IL 23 concurrency|
|Pingree Grove||73.7||118.6||east (Grant Highway) / south - Elgin, Elburn||West end of US 20 / IL 47 concurrency|
|Starks||74.2||119.4||west (Grant Highway) / north - Marengo, Huntley||East end of US 20 / IL 47 concurrency|
|Kane||West Dundee||83.2||133.9||(8th Street) - Elgin, Algonquin|
|East Dundee||84.1||135.3||east (Penny Avenue)||Western terminus of IL 68|
(Dundee Avenue) to
(Sutton Road) to
/ to / / - Chicago
|Exit 1 (I-290)|
|Elk Grove Village||101.2||162.9||south (Busse Road)||West end of IL 83 concurrency|
|101.2||162.9||north (West Oakton Street)||East end of IL 83 concurrency|
(Western O'Hare Beltway)
east (Jane Addams Memorial Tollway) - Chicago
|Exit 76 (I-90); no access to I-90 west or from I-90 east|
|106.0||170.6||/ (Mannheim Road)|
west (Jane Addams Memorial Tollway) - Rockford
|Chicago||108.7||174.9||south (Cumberland Avenue) - River Grove||Northern terminus of IL 171|
|109.4||176.1||east (Kennedy Expressway) - Rockford||Exit 80 (I-90)|
|110.5||177.8||east (Kennedy Expressway) - Chicago||Exi 81A (I-90)|
|110.71||178.17||(Harlem Avenue) - Forest Park, Niles||Eastern terminus of IL 72|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi|