Live in Chicago area?

Sep 27th, 2008, 05:34 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 138
Live in Chicago area?

I'm looking for input from those living in the Chicago area. We're considering a move there, and trying to gather as much information as possible.
So, if you live there and feel like humoring us, what do love about it? What do you hate about it? What specific area do you live in? What's your dream area to live in? Anything else you want to tell us that we might not be able to find out elsewhere?

Just by way of background, we're a young(ish) couple with a toddler currently living in Houston. We met living in NYC. I grew up in WI; he grew up in TX.

Thanks much to anyone who can offer advice!
sls15 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 07:01 AM
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Posts: 138
Bump for some weekday traffic.
Any thoughts/advice appreciated!
sls15 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 08:32 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
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Are you considering a move to Chicago the city or Chicagoland area?
TwoFatFeet is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 09:12 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 388
I think you may have better luck posting your question on:

I miss the restaurants, museums and theater. I wasn't prepared for how cold it is. I used to live in Lincoln Park, which out of 5 states, is one of the best neighborhoods I've lived in.

absolutkz is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 01:44 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,498
I was born & raised in Chicago. I love it here.

For one thing it has The Lake. People who live here take advantage of it. The Indiana Dunes & Warren Dunes in Michigan are just a short drive away. Plus the Downtown lake front for swimming, fishing, boating, picnicing...

Chicago has all the arts - opera, ballet, theater, museums, symphony...

Great shopping & restaurants.

Personnaly, I live in Naperville & work in Melrose Park. I don't get downtown as often as I would like. But that is mostly due to working the mudnight shift.

The two things I hate about it are the corrupt politics and the traffic.

The last two weeks of January are always the coldest of the year.

The summers are hot & humid. Since you are from Houston you will feel right at home!
cheribob is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 05:13 PM
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Thanks all! We have a toddler and want public schools, but also have a budget. So we will most likely be in a suburb, but nothing too far out. I'll work downtown, and want a relatively short commute (30-45 min. max). Oak Park, Evanston and Elmhurst have been suggested by friends. They all seem quite different from each other, and we plan on visiting them and others soon.

Any other thoughts for us?
sls15 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 07:30 PM
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absolut--just had to say thanks for the link. I've spent my entire evening on that site, and know I'll be back again soon. Thanks!
sls15 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 07:31 PM
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We live in Villa Park, which is one suburb farther out than Elmhurst. My husband commutes by train into the city for work. We also go into the city frequently on Sunday afternoons for leisure. It takes my husband about 40 minutes to get in on Metra. Driving in on Sundays...well, it depends on the traffic!

We lived in Oak Park our first three years in this area. Then moved to Berwyn for 11 years. We've now been out here for just over 11.

Our kids started school at a Catholic grade school in Berwyn. Our daughter was just starting sixth grade, our son third when we moved out here and switched to public schools.

On the whole, we were happy with Willowbrook H.S. Both of our kids got into their first choice colleges. And, because Willowbrook is relatively small by local standards, they were able to participate in activities that they would probably have been edged out of at a bigger school with more competition. But York in Elmhurst has a better reputation.

I know high school is a long way off for you. But it often plays a large part in where people choose to buy a home.

Having lived in Oak Park and so close to Elmhurst, I can tell you that they're both nice areas with much to recommend them. As a matter of fact, my husband would love to move back to Oak Park someday! But they're both fairly expensive areas in which to buy.

In general terms, we love the Chicago area. We were both born and raised in Illinois (though not this part of the state). But we spent the first nine years of our marriage in various parts of the eastern US. As much as we liked the east, we were very happy to be back closer to family. And now really couldn't imagine living anywhere else.

As cheribob said, the summers shouldn't be too much of a problem for you. The winters... But then, if you grew up in Wisconsin, you know what to expect!

Good luck to you with your decision!
CAPH52 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2008, 08:21 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 710
Well, I am a lifelong Chicagoan and have always lived north. To me you want to be as close to the lake as possible, which would make Evanston preferable to Elmhurst or Oak Park.

Lots of factors influence the length of your commute. If you live in Evanston, you could use Metra train or CTA, but where you work downtown could add considerably to the overall length of your commute. I think most commutes amount to AT LEAST 45 minutes, even from close-in suburbs, if you are really calculating door-to-door.

Things I love about Chicago: the lake, the people, theatre, opera, museums, shopping, restaurants, diverse neighborhoods. Much more manageable than New York, but traffic gets worse every year.

marilynl is offline  
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