For the last several months I have been writing for the Chicago 77 Real Estate Blog. The title came from the 77 communities that make up the City. Some of my posts have been brief market updates and other longer and more substantive. In thinking of a new post to write, I realized I had not actually written any specifically about these 77 communities. Today is my first. I am starting with number 77, the Edgewater area. What really makes up the character and the sustainability of Chicago is its neighborhoods. That is why I have decided to start writing about them.
A Neighborhood of Many Communities
Edgewater has one of Chicago?s greatest treasures of its park and lakefront on the East, north to south from Devon Avenue to Foster Ravenswood to its West. Growing up in Chicago I learned all neighborhoods have pocket communities. Growing up a North sider, I learned those of the Edgewater area early on. Some center around its churches and schools and for Andersonville it has always been its strong retail corridor of Clark Street. Long ago a strong Swedish community, there are still a few restaurants left but the streets are now filled with a large variety of restaurants and many other retail shops making Andersonville a destination place. At the very North end is everyone?s favorite place to roam, Gethsemane Garden Center.
One of the sustaining factors of the greater neighborhood are residential areas of single family homes. Their residents take great pride in identifying themselves with homey names like Edgewater Glen, Lakewood-Balmoral and Magnolia Glen. These areas are where you find many of Chicago?s traditional ?American 4 Square? homes, some on the larger than typically 125 x 25 city lot.
Over the years most of the mansions on Sheridan Road have been replaced by high rises skirting the North side beaches. One building that has been there since 1929 is what most people who go through the city using Lake Shore Drive refer to as the ?Pink? building, the Landmark Edgewater Beach Apartments, a coop since the 1950?s. These grand apartments have been home to some of the most famous Chicagoans.
To further explore the history visit the Edgewater Historical Society.