As in most parts of Chicago, the vast majority of Near West Side homes are condos or townhomes. You can browse through the MLS listings for Near West Side homes at the links below:
Like many Chicago neighborhoods home inventory levels in the Near West Side took a huge hit after the tax credit expired. The months supply of 2 - 3 bedroom condos skyrocketed as contract volume nosedived. It has only recently recovered considerably, with October at the lowest level since we've been tracking it. Condo inventory is now a respectable number now at just under 10 months supply.
Market times in the Near West have appeared to decline but it's partly an illusion. A large portion of the decline has been driven by the cancellation and expiration of some extremely old listings - e.g. several at 775 W Jackson (the Odyssey Lofts). Nevertheless, what remains doesn't look that old at just about 130 days in October.
Note that the MLS changed their reporting methodology for market times, affecting the data back to October 2007.Just west of Chicago's Loop, the neighborhood area known as the Near West Side is actually a conglomeration of neighborhoods and an eclectic one at that. Bounded on the north by Grand Avenue, on the south by 16thStreet, on the west by the Pennsylvania Railroad, and on the east by the Chicago River, the Near West is many things at once: a transportation hub, a Mecca for ethnic neighborhoods, one of the largest medical districts in America,a university town, and the home of the Bulls/Blackhawks at United Center. What was once a poverty-stricken and largely industrial region has become one of the city's fastest growing residential centers.
|West Loop and Greektown
|Fulton River District
|University Village and Little Italy
|Illinois Medical District
|Our Favorite Restaurants
|Our Favorite Merchants
|Near West Side Real Estate
You can find a great map showing the smaller neighborhoods within the Near West Side here.
With the Kennedy Expressway running along its eastern end, the Eisenhower Expressway along its southern end, and Chicago's elegant Union Station (in the area known as the West Loop Gate), this region has the bustling traffic of its famous namesake all over again. Warehouses and factories give the area an industrial aura, yet behind many of the sweeping brick facades are converted lofts and commercial spaces, housing everything from art galleries to a diverse assortment of restaurants. Condos and towering condominiums also add to the skyline. With its proximity to the Loop, its relative affordability, and the University of Illinois' Chicago Campus just around the corner(south of the Eisenhower Expressway), the West Loop has become a popular residential destination among young urbanites. Needless to say,the area is also replete with a thriving nightlife, starched collar or no collar, sports fan or Cabernet aficionado. If trendy bars aren't your idea of culture, however, you can always go Greek! Centering on Halsted Street is Chicago's Greektown, which, despite its humble appearance, is sure to excite your palate. And when the sun is out, you can let that lamb souvlaki digest while taking a stroll in one of the West Loop's two verdant parks, amidst some stunning views to the east: Union Park and Skinner Park. Numerous festivals take place in the summer,including the Pitchfork Music Festival and a 5K Run/Walk (with an ensuing block party).
On the western edge of the Chicago River (south of Grand and north of Madison) is the Fulton River District, another commingling of residential and commercial that has come to typify the Near West. Once known for its manufacturing and still known as a transportation hub,the neighborhood is full of converted lofts (of the kind already mentioned), townhomes, and mid- to high-rise condominiums. While the Union Station is Chicago's prominent (and last) intercity terminal, the Ogilvie Transportation Center - located just north of Union Station in the Fulton River District - is one of Chicago's prominent extra-city stations, serving three commuter rail lines of the Metra's Union Pacific District. In the last decade or so, the area has also become a culinary hotspot, with some of the finest restaurants downtown.
The area between the Dan Ryan Expressway and Ashland Avenue, south of the Eisenhower and north of 16th Street includes University Village and Little Italy. It is rich with a variety of housing alternatives and cultural activities.
Just west of University Village is the area known as the Illinois Medical District (also called the Medical Village). As the 6thlargest medical district in the United States, it certainly lives up to its name. Included among the various institutions are the John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County - which served as the model for the ER series - Rush University Medical Center, the Chicago Dept. of Public Health, and many more.
Once joined to Little Italy before the construction of the Illinois Medical Center, this triangle shaped neighborhood just west of the Medical District further reflects the immigrant history of the Near West. One of the more conspicuous nods to this history is the collection of 19th Century row houses-with their detail work and Italianate quoins - that line such streets as Bowler Street and Oakley Boulevard.
Wow Cafe & Wingery (717 W. Maxwell St.) - Cozy little neighborhood bar and grill with awesome burgers, wings, wraps, and sweet potato fries.
Joy Yee Noodle (1335 S. Halsted) - Huge menu of Pan-Asian cuisine served in casual dining environment. Must have 100 items including every imaginable noodle dish and soup.
Meli Cafe & Juice Bar-Great for breakfast, brunch, or lunch, this place has a light and airy atmosphere. Menu includes a large assortment of very reasonable priced omelets, skillets, and frittatas along with crepes, waffles, and French toast. Sandwiches are also out of this world.
Hong Kong Delight-This is our favorite for Chinese carry out as the restaurant does not offer a great atmosphere. Food is delicious, authentic, and reasonably priced.
Gateway Auto Service(840 W. Washington) - Shadi Qattawi has achieved the American dream. A few years ago, with help from his landlord, he started his own auto service shop. Today he has 3 locations and is always packed - with good reason. They know what they are doing and believe in customer service.
This section is still under construction.