nyuhoosier
nyuhoosier
Joined: Feb 16, 2010
  • Threads: 31
  • Posts: 248
May 21st, 2010 at 9:47:26 PM permalink
At risk of getting way ahead of myself, I'm wondering if anyone could provide some advice on moving to Chicago -- where to live, whether to get rid of one's car, etc. It appears as though I might receive a job offer from a company based in the Tribune Building in the heart of Chicago. It has been years since I've lived in a truly urban setting, and my knowledge of Chicago is admittedly slim. I want a good mix of affordability, quality of life and a reasonable commuting distance. I am 28 years old and single, so I'm at a point in life where I don't need a large house in suburbia, but also don't want to relive my college days in squalor. So if any Chicagoans out there can offer some advice, I'd really appreciate it. When it comes to the car question (necessary or no?) I'm completely clueless.
teddys
teddys
Joined: Nov 14, 2009
  • Threads: 150
  • Posts: 5444
May 22nd, 2010 at 7:13:17 AM permalink
First of all, congrats! (Assuming you got the job). My sister lives in Chicago. You can find plenty of places to live on the North Side. Check out these neighborhoods: Lincoln Park, Wrigleyville, Lakeview. There are also solid but "fringey" neighborhoods around there like Roscoe Village, Wicker Park, etc. Prices are high but you should be able to find something nice for your money. Don't bother looking in other areas of the city/suburbs.
Ditch the car. You can get downtown faster on the "El." Traffic in Chicago is HORRIBLE. You might want to take into account proximity to the Red/Blue/Brown lines when you are looking for a place, too.
"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
nyuhoosier
nyuhoosier
Joined: Feb 16, 2010
  • Threads: 31
  • Posts: 248
May 22nd, 2010 at 10:15:59 AM permalink
Thanks for the tips. It's good to know that I don't need a car. (I won't be shedding any tears over parting with that money pit.) Took a glace at some random Craigslist listings for housing and the prices weren't too bad for a city of that size.
FinsRule
FinsRule
Joined: Dec 23, 2009
  • Threads: 123
  • Posts: 3774
May 22nd, 2010 at 2:51:09 PM permalink
I don't see a good reason to get rid of the car. You aren't going to use it every day, but there are plenty of neighborhoods that have decent street parking.

I love Chicago. Just keep eating pizza and don't stop.
teddys
teddys
Joined: Nov 14, 2009
  • Threads: 150
  • Posts: 5444
May 22nd, 2010 at 5:58:29 PM permalink
Quote: FinsRule

Just keep eating pizza and hot dogs and don't stop.

"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
boymimbo
boymimbo
Joined: Nov 12, 2009
  • Threads: 17
  • Posts: 5994
May 23rd, 2010 at 6:45:38 AM permalink
Nice work on the job!

I've lived in downtown Chicago (in the Loop, next to Millennium Park), for close to a year, while on assignment there. Chicago is absolutely a terrific gem. It's got sports history in the Blackhawks, Bulls, Bears, WhiteSox, and Cubs. The Adler Planetarium and Shedd Aquarium are terrific. Navy Pier's a fun stop, and the area along the Lakeshore all the way from Lincoln Park to the Museums are phenomenal.

That said, housing in downtown is expensive, so you gotta look in the burbs. Try to find a place close to a subway line. Traffic is horrendous getting to downtown (just like any other major fare). Chicago has its good neighbourhoods and its bad neighbourhoods as well so you gotta do your research. If you're a urban farer however and don't have family, I think living it up in a condo in River North, Near North, or Gold Coast would all be within walking distance of the Trib would be alot of fun for a young guy.
----- You want the truth! You can't handle the truth!
Asswhoopermcdaddy
Asswhoopermcdaddy
Joined: Nov 30, 2009
  • Threads: 85
  • Posts: 550
May 24th, 2010 at 6:19:39 AM permalink
There is a great bar scene at the Gold Coast or Barbary Coast area in downtown Chicago. I found the city to be friendly than most, but of course you'll have to keep your wits about you. Congrats on the job offer. I'd avoid St. Charles because thats a bit far from Chicago. Its suburbia for people who are settled down, with kids, and no sidewalks. Stay in the city, live the life and good luck with everything. I think the necessity of a car really depends on whether public transportation is accessible to and from your workplace. Check out their chamber of commerce and order some info on the city.
nyuhoosier
nyuhoosier
Joined: Feb 16, 2010
  • Threads: 31
  • Posts: 248
May 24th, 2010 at 7:55:38 AM permalink
Thanks for the info, everyone. Once that job offer comes, I'll probably check out Wicker Park and some of the northside neighborhoods you all mentioned (Gold Coast, Lincoln Park, etc.) After living in NY and LV, the people in Chicago will probably seem like the nicest folks on earth. One more reason to be excited!
Kayday
Kayday
Joined: Dec 11, 2009
  • Threads: 3
  • Posts: 45
May 24th, 2010 at 1:50:54 PM permalink
Let me add my congratulations and two cents.

Another neighborhood you might consider is my neighborhood, Edgewater / Andersonville. I've lived here in various spots for the past ten years. It's a bit farther north, but still easily accessible to downtown via train and express bus. It's more affordable than Lakeview, but still close to the lake. It's also one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Chicago, so there's a very good selection of ethnic restaurants of all kinds. Plenty of bars, too, including my favorite, the Hop Leaf.

Wicker Park is great too - super easy access to downtown via train, and great restaurants and clubs. The only thing missing there is easy access to the lake.

Whether you need a car really depends on where you live, I'd say. If you're close the the L you can get by easily without one. I do like having mine for trips to the grocery store, Target, Home Depot, etc., but plenty of people don't have cars here.
UWPeteO
UWPeteO
Joined: Apr 27, 2010
  • Threads: 3
  • Posts: 40
May 24th, 2010 at 2:04:21 PM permalink
Well I don't want to be the only Chicago resident not offering some info, so here's what I've got.

86 the car - insurance and parking in the city costs a fortune, and that's saying nothing of the gas prices and wear and tear on your car (and sanity) that driving in Chicago traffic will do. Chicago public transit is pretty unbeatable when it comes to areas covered, and if you desperately need to get somewhere not covered you can always take a cab or sign up for a car-sharing service (iGo or ZipCar).

For living arrangements, I can't speak to anything except the North side - for your age and status I'd highly recommend one of them (Lakeview, Wrigleyville, Lincoln Park, Gold Coast, etc). Personally I live in Lincoln Park, which as a whole is quite young (new families and recent grads, mostly), and is very safe. There are a ton of places to eat and shop, and rental prices are pretty fair for Chicago (800-1200/month for a 1BR). I'd recommend getting in contact with an apartment finder service before you make any decisions (Apartment People is great) - it's completely free and they'll show you what's available given your preferences, and then drive you from place to place to see them first hand. I'd agree with some of the previous comments that you'll want to live near an El or Subway stop, but if you can't swing it there's buses that service pretty much every place the trains don't.

Best of luck with the job offer, and I hope your move goes smoothly!

  • Jump to: