Moving to Chicago....where to live?

May 26th, 2004, 08:04 AM
  #1  
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Moving to Chicago....where to live?

Hi guys....my best friend is moving to Chicago and has to find an apartment soon. In NY, he lives on 5th Avenue and 9th Street, a block north of Washington Square Park and right smack in the west village. I have been to Chicago myself and the neighborhoods that best typifies the west village are the lakeview and lincoln park areas. Please share your thoughts about these neighborhoods. I know he will love the close proximity to the lake and the leafy and small town feel of these two areas. Thanks!!
gogabego is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 08:15 AM
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Lincoln Park and Lakeview are both great neighborhoods but they are some of the more expensive neighborhoods, although compared to NY, it probably doesn't matter. I prefer Lakeview, right off Southport, north of Belmont-it's a little calmer and less crowded but a great neighborhood.
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May 26th, 2004, 08:19 AM
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I lived in New York, went to summer school at NYU, and have been in Chicago for the past 35 years. My sons who are now married live in Lincoln Park-DePaul area and love it. They use to live on the Gold Coast which is also a great neighborhood. Anywhere on the Near North near the lake is wonderful.
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May 26th, 2004, 09:29 AM
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HI goga,
I second the Lakeview area...it has a great vibe..tons of cafes, quirky bars, safe, and prices are still reasonable...is your friend renting or buying?
hipster70 is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 09:38 AM
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I travel alot and have been to NYC, Chicago, Los Angeles, and more. I found the Chicago traffic to be the worst of the three I mentioned; and Los Angeles was bad. Be careful to choose a home where the major highways are not.
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May 26th, 2004, 09:55 AM
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Lincoln Park, DePaul and Lakeview are great areas, though crowded and expensive. Another idea might be the new east side, around 16th-20th Street south, east of Michigan Avenue. Printer's Row (Dearborn south of Congress) is another neighborhood I've always found attractive. I lived for years along the LaSalle corridor north of Chicago Avenue, and that was a also a terrific location.
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May 26th, 2004, 10:01 AM
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I a great neighboorhood is Linclon Square - tons of great local bars and fantastic resturants, old town school of folk music, a movie theater and lots of local food an wine markets. Also has great transportation options (both EL and metra ) and cheaper rents than lakeview or linclon park.
IMO East Lakeview(broadway/diverery) is most like a new york hood. Lincoln park is much lower density than West Village in NYC. Unfortunately - I really don't think any chicago neighboor hoods really resmble west village in look, but as far as personality - I would say lakeview.
The gold coast has an the upper east side sort of look - but mixed in with urban renewal buildings and more parking lots. Rents are higher here

as far as cohru01's statement - I would not worry about traffic - beacuse your really don't need a car in chicago. Hopefully your friend will not be working in the suburbs - beacuse the commute is sheer agony.
dgruzew is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 10:56 AM
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You have all been so helpful, thanks. I especially appreciate the pros and cons some wrote about Lakeview because as we all know, there's no such thing as a perfect area to live. Thanks also about the advise about parking and owning a car as he will have to get himself a car as he will be working outside Chicago. He will be renting for now. How much is a typical 2 bedroom apartment in the lakeview/lincoln park area? R the apartments like Manhattan in size, i.e. the size of a shoebox?
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May 26th, 2004, 11:04 AM
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Goga,
Happy to help...The apartments in Lakeview are pretty decent in size and a 2 bedroom can run between $ 1100-1800..but of course..this all depends on the type of apartment..for the newly rehabbed..they tend to run higher..for a vintage apartment with radiator heat and all..more on the lower side..

Lincoln Park tends to be higher than Lakeview and they can run up to $ 2000.00 for a 2 bedroom..

As a previous poster mentioned..you can get on the www.chicagoreader.com...or you can go to www.apartmentpeople.com..they can find you places and drive you to them..

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May 26th, 2004, 11:27 AM
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Where outside of Chicago will he be working and how much time is he willing to devote to commuting each day? Proximity to the right expressway might be important. For example, I wouldn't want to live in Lakeview and have to commute to the Western suburbs.

FYI, the reverse commutes here are not much better than a traditional commute into and out of the city. Sometimes it is possible to commute to the suburbs by train. If so, proximity to a station on the appropriate line might be useful.
ms_go is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 11:57 AM
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Great post ms.go....he is working at the Sears office. Hoffman something? Or is it Hollman.....I am not sure.
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May 26th, 2004, 11:59 AM
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commuting out of he city is much worse than commuting in. especally if you are using the kennedy expressway - express lanes are reversable and all face IN during the morning and out in the evening. I agree if you need to be by a highway you may want to consider living near.

Another great area that has good options for expressway riders( lakeview does not unless you want Lake shore drive) is Wicker Park. very cool neighboorhood similar in spirit(but not looks) to NY' East village
lots to do in that hood.

Where will he be working?
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May 26th, 2004, 12:07 PM
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Oh my...Hoffman Estates. That will be quite some commute. I have a friend who used to live in the city and commute there. It was often 90 minutes each way.

I wouldn't be surprised if Sears doesn't have some kind of shuttle from the Metra commuter train. He might ask Sears about that. If so, then he might want to look for something with easy access to Union Station or Western Ave. Station (depending on the line; I think it might be Milwaukee District West line; schedules available at www.metrarail.com).

Otherwise, if living in the city, I'd be prepared to leave really early in the morning and drive back in after the evening rush.

Good luck.
ms_go is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 12:10 PM
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sorry - did not see the last post. IF ye is working at Sears corporate headquaters he will be in Hoffman Estates. It is quite a haul out of the city. and alot of traffic also. Again
In this case I would recommend Wicker Park (if you saw real-world chicago, this is where they stayed)
Wicker park has lots of easy street parking and many apartments come with cheap (sometimes free) parking. Zoneing restrictions in the area make sure that each new housing unit has 1.5 parking spaces so denisty is much lower. Some of ther best resturants in the city are in the area and alot of the bars are open till 4(5 on sat) so it is very good for a young person.

Good luck with the commute to Hoffman Estates - my advice would be to leave very early and try to get on the road home before 4 pm ( after that you might be looking at 2 hour commute)
dgruzew is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 01:00 PM
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I love this website because of this amazing exchange of information....you are all great, thanks!! Where exactly is Wicker Park?
gogabego is offline  
May 26th, 2004, 01:03 PM
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Wicker Park is west and slightly south of Lincoln Park-it's a more "artsy" neighborhood that LP/Lakeview. The downside with the scenario you present is that it is a ways away from the lake. However, it is a great neightborhood, lots of good shops/restuarants.
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May 26th, 2004, 01:48 PM
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Wicker Park is centered around the streets Damen,North, and milwaukee. It is about 2-2.5 miles away from the lake so it is a little farther, but the north ave. bus will take you right to the lake - also there is a bike lane on armitage that will have you at the lake in no time. it is very conveinent for a commuter that drives. (but hoffman estates is still very far away)

I really like this area but it is a little gritter than lakeview,lincoln park or Lincoln Square. Lots of late night bars, lots funky people hanging out at night.
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May 26th, 2004, 04:42 PM
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gogabego

Chicgal has a point on this. you should have hime come out here and check out the commute.

Try driving into the city from Sears at 4 pm and he will decide if he wants to live in the city.
I used to live in lakeview and commute to Schaumburg - woodfield area( which is about 10 miles closer than sears) The moring rush hour was not bad- I Left about 6:45-7 got there by 7:30-7:45(if you leave later your travel times increase)
But coming home was UNBEARABLE !!! sometimes it took me 2 hours !! and weather just componds it Sears is even farther out!!. I quit my job after 6 months and vowed to never work in the surburbs again(and I havent).

If he considers the suburbs Arlington Heights is a pretty decent place. It has nicely developed downtown area with some resturants, a theater and a few pubs. also a train station to to take you downtown. Schuamburg is nice too, but there is no pedestrian area - just a huge mall. Both these towns are pretty convienent to Sears

There might be some shuttle service offerd to sears employees.

But if he really wants to live in the city. the best hoods for driving woud be Wicker Park, and possibly an area north of wicker park west of lakeview called Roscoe Village - it is a nice cozy area centered around a little commercial district on rosoe street


dgruzew is offline  
May 27th, 2004, 04:04 AM
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I like Wicker Park too. Not as nice as the Lakeview/Lincoln Park area fersure but a definite better commute to Hoffman Estates. Cutting travel time by half an hour to 45 minutes may not seem much but trust me, winter and rush hour commutes will make it worth it.
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