What makes a neighborhood great? Everyone has a different answer depending on where you live. People who live just a few miles apart can have very different views of what’s special about their town. So to get a better look at some of the amazing neighborhoods out there we’re starting a new series of blog posts to feature these great places to live. This is inaugural post is from Andrea Geller with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Chicago, IL who takes us on a quick tour through some of the amazing places to live along the infamous “L” in Chicago.
Welcome to Chicago! In the early part of the twentieth century Chicago neighborhoods emerged as a result of its brand new transit system called the ‘L’ (also incorrectly written El, short for “elevated”). These neighborhoods continue to thrive over a hundred years later as a result of strong commercial and residential communities built around these train stops. So follow me as I take you on a tour through some of these great neighborhoods.
The Southport Corridor
A pocket community of the greater Lakeview neighborhood centers around the Southport Avenue ‘L’ stop that runs on the Brown Line. Many people who move to the area do so because of the convenience of having the stop there, about a 20 minute trip to Chicago’s downtown business district. Even if they have a car, there seems to be a desire to know its there. The businesses that sit on the street which make is to attractive to its residents range from entertainment to shopping. There are coffee houses, restaurants and bars, salons and theaters.
A few stops down from the Southport Avenue Brown line is the Western Avenue stop in Lincoln Square. Another established community with a strong retail base offers summer concerts and farmers markets. The neighborhood is also home to the Old Town School of Folk Music, the largest independent community arts school in the United States. A treasure in the middle of the city is Wells Park, a fifteen acre public park complete with an indoor pool open year round for the community. The neighborhood square is where members of the community often gather.
These two neighborhoods meet at the North and Damen Blue Line stop. The Blue Line is the train that runs to Chicago’s Downtown and O’Hare Airport. Offering up an eclectic collection of shopping, art galleries, restaurants and bars, there is something for everyone. An area that dates back before the Great Chicago Fire, the architectural style varies from building to building.
So why live here? In all these neighborhoods there are plenty of living options including condominiums, townhouses and single family residences with a combination of new construction and renovated properties. Scattered throughout the areas are commercial buildings that have been converted to lofts, but because of the wide range of housing prices, ther’s opportunity for all to be part of these communities.
Whether you like the Southport Corridor, Lincoln Square, Bucktown or Wicker Park, they all offer the best in urban living. They continue to grow in popularity as they are the neighborhoods where Chicagoans want to live.
Here’s to the great neighborhoods along the ‘L’ and all the things that make Chicago, Chicago.