Chicago Relocation

Lincoln Park – The other epicenter

January 21, 2014

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Chicago neighborhoods
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John D’Ambrogio

If you’re new to Chicago, you probably know of two neighborhoods – The Loop and Lincoln Park. A Chicago truism is that everyone (I know) has probably worked in The Loop at one point (or said they did), or lived in Lincoln Park (or said the did). Lincoln Park is such an iconic Chicago neighborhood that it’s sometimes tough to get your arms around it. It set the standard for being the cool neighborhood so long ago and it (arguably) inspired the renaissance of so many other northside communities. (Think, Lakeview to Wicker Park, to Bucktown).

But Lincoln Park does not rest on its laurels, although virtually any address in Lincoln Park is a perennially desirable one. It’s a vibrant community (that may skew a little young), with major thoroughfares of Clark, Halsted, and Lincoln. It’s jammed with pubs, restaurants, shops….anything and everything that a heavily populated, public transportation-heavy, mobile community needs. It’s an easy El or bus ride to downtown, easy access to LSD and the major highways, you can walk to the world class Lincoln Park zoo – it truly is a pedestrian urbanites’ paradise.

Hitting back on the ‘three neighborhoods for the price of one” thing that Chicago likes, “greater” Lincoln Park includes the Old Town community (which merits its own blog), Old Town Triangle, DePaul, West Depaul, and more. But a very general rule of thumb would dictate that price inches down and space goes up the further west of the lake and north of downtown. So it’s a trade-off: smaller housing close to the lake or “more for your money” a bit further north or west.

You can really find all types of urban housing in beautiful Lincoln Park. From luxury high rises along the lake, to traditional Chicago brick or frame flats, corridor buildings, courtyards, as well as some pricy single family homes it really has such a variety. Try a search and see for yourself.

The nightlife scene is a bit overwhelmed by the college and “young professionals” crowd, which is a great thing if you’re in that demographic. You can certainly find quality cuisine of any time – Thai, Sushi, Italian, American, French, fusion of any type! It’s hard to name a few without naming 50, but If you want a classic post bar hot dog experience, you need to go to Weiner Circle.  Toast for an exceptional and creative brunch at Noodles at Penny’s (multiple locations). Incredible tapas and sangria at Cafe Ba Ba Reeba – Chorizo wrapped dates with cheese – need I say more? Craft beer and the best homemade potato chips around – it’s Goose Island.

I tremble to think about what to advise people to do in Lincoln Park. It literally has everything.

Want to see great live Theatre? 2nd City, hands down.

Oh, real theater, not improv? Try Steppenwolf among dozen other places

Get some sun? Walk to the beach. Exotic Animals? Late night bars (hundreds) or the famous Lincoln Park Zoo. Blues? Kingston Mines …. B. L.U.E.S.  Creepy? 2122 N. Clark St., site of the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre (behind Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinder), or The Biograph Theater where Dillinger was gunned down Museums – Chicago History Museum, Peggy Notebart Nature Museum.  The list goes on and on…..and on. 

So spend a day, spend a weekend, spend a year. You’ll enjoy every minute.


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