Gary is a city in Lake County, Indiana, United States. The city is in the southeastern portion of the Chicago metropolitan area and is 25 miles from downtown Chicago. The population was 102,746 at the 2000 census, making it the fifth-largest city in the state. Gary was once the second-largest city in Indiana, behind Indianapolis, a position now held by Fort Wayne, Indiana. It borders Lake Michigan and is best known for its large steel mills.