Edgewater consists of the neighborhoods Andersonville, Edgewater Glen, Lakewood-Balmoral and Magnolia Glen. A wonderfully scenic and cozy community, Edgewater boasts sandy beaches, lush green parks, a bustling restaurant and nightlife scene, and an appreciation of arts and culture, as well as pride in its Nordic heritage. Residents of Edgewater are treated to a number of charming festivals throughout the year like the Andersonville Midsommerfest, an outdoor street festival that attracts 50,000 people each year. Families in the area love Edgewater for its calm, laid back atmosphere and all the great schools available in the region. Professionals take up residence in Edgewater homes because of its easy access to downtown as well as Evanston. Affordable and luxurious Edgewater homes for sale, a real sense of pride in community and heritage, tons of events and venues to take advantage of and plenty of sights to see have all have lead to Edgewater's increasing popularity as a very desirable place to live in Chicago.
Edgewater is located in Chicago’s northeastern corner along Lake Michigan, and consists of a number of beaches.
Edgewater is about 8 miles north of the Chicago Loop. Neighboring communities include Rogers Park to the north, Ravenswood and Uptown to the south, and Lincoln Square to the west.
Edgewater’s borders consist of Foster Avenue on the south, Devon Avenue on the north, Ravenswood Avenue on the west, and Lake Michigan on the east.
The city’s largest park, Lincoln Park, begins in Edgewater’s southern region and stretches nearly all the way to downtown.
Edgewater was last to be recognized as an official Chicago community, despite having been an elite 19th century suburb.
Edgewater was first developed in the 1880s as a summer getaway for Chicagoans. It made up the northeastern corner of the Lake View Township, an independent suburb that was annexed by Chicago in 1889.
There were few settler of Edgewater before its development and later inclusion of Chicago.
It was in 1886 that John Lewis Cochran, after purchasing land in the Lake View Township, developed a subdivision and advertised it as Edgewater.
Cochran began by building mansions along the waterfront, and then smaller, more affordable Edgewater homes in the region’s western portion.
Taking a real sense of pride in his Edgewater, Cochran bucked the trend of other suburban developers and installed improvements such as sidewalks, sewers and streetlight before people moved in.
Soon thereafter he also founded the Edgewater Light Company.
Cochran was instrumental in bringing public transportation to the area. He convinced the Chicago, Milwaukee & St Paul Railroad to connect to the community via Bryn Mawr Avenue; then he made sure the Northwester Elevated Railroad Company (which opened in 1908) connected to the region by placing a station on Howard Street.
The availability of transport brought in developers of apartment buildings and residential hotels causing a boom in population.
Throughout the 20th century, Edgewater saw its ups and downs. In the 1940s many mansions along Sheridan Road were razed and replaced by high-rise apartment buildings. The area was quickly becoming overcrowded and rents were increasing while buildings were ill-kept.
In 1960 the Edgewater Community Council was created and by 1973 an Edgewater branch of the Chicago Public Library was granted the area. By 1980 residents of Edgewater condos and homes were allowed to separate from Uptown and were given their own distinct status as Community 77 of Chicago.
Many Edgewater homes for sale offer breathtaking views of the lake, easy access to the beaches, and a host of architectural styles from the late 19th century, early 20th century and present day.
Winthrop Avenue and Kenmore Avenue are the main corridors running parallel to the lake. Edgewater condos and homes in this area offer picturesque views of the lake, modern amenities, balconies, updated interiors, and tree-lined streets.
The western portion of Edgewater features smaller, single-family homes amongst a calm and serene atmosphere. These houses often offer great porch space, green lawns, and quiet streets. Many houses in this area are Victorians, or Victorian-influenced.
Edgewater homes start at around $100,000 and can go up to over $500,000 for a 1 to 2 bedroom single-family home. Three to five bedroom houses start at $200,000 and can cost more than $1.5 million.
Edgewater condos and townhouses start at around $45,000 and can go up to over $500,000 for a 1 or 2 bedroom. Three to 4 bedroom condos start at $100,000 and can range up to more than $800,000.
Edgewater rentals can cost around $800 a month for a 1 bedroom, $1,150 for a 2 bedroom and $1,500 for a 3 bedroom.
Chicago is a great city for transportation. Whether it’s public transportation, biking, walking, or access to interstates, transportation is easy--and Edgewater is no exception.
Route 14 runs through Edgewater and connects to Edens Expressway (I-94), offering quick access to downtown Chicago and the Chicagoland area, as well as destinations north of the Illinois border.
Lake Shore Drive connects to Edgewater at Bryn Mawr and Hollywood Avenues, providing another option for quick access to downtown.
Parking in Edgewater requires a permit as most residential areas are zoned and street parking can be limited. A city sticker can be purchased at City Hall (121 N LaSalle St, 312-744-6881). A permit can also be purchased at the neighborhood substation (North Substation 2550 W Addison St).
For Edgewater residents that prefer public transportation, they’ll find no difficulty in getting where they want to go at any time of day.
The CTA Red Line conveniently runs 24 hours with four connections in Edgewater.
Berwyn Red Line Station is located at 1121 W. Berwyn Ave and connects to CTA Buses 36, 92, 144 and 146, and Pace Bus 210.
Bryn Mawr Red Line Station, at 1119 W. Bryn Mawr Ave, connects to CTA Buses 36, 84 and Pace Bus 210.
Thorndale Red Line Station can be found at 1118 W. Thorndale Ave and connects to CTA Bus 36.
Granville Red Line Station is at 1119 W. Granville Ave and also connects to CTA Bus 36.
Edgewater residents also have access to the CTA Purple Line, which runs between Linden in Wilmette and the Howard Station. It also provides express service to downtown Chicago during weekday rush periods.
Pace Bus 210, which has connection at both the Berwyn and Bryn Mawr stops, provides service to Metra stations in at Glenview, Golf, and Morton Grove.
And it’s really easy to get around Edgewater just by walking. The community scored a “Very Walkable” 89 on the Walk Score scale.
Edgewater is home to a handful of top-notch private schools and public schools, all devoted to providing school-age children with the wherewithal to approach and succeed in an ever-changing world by preparing them early on with the desire to attend college and never quit learning in life.
Edgewater is home to a thriving and lively nightlife. Many choices meet locals when trying to decide which hotspot to hit on any given night. There are friendly, quiet neighborhood bars, bustling pubs, rowdy sports bars and quaint spots perfect for whiling away the evening with friends.
Hopleaf Bar (5148 N Clark St, 773-334-9851) is one of Chicago’s most popular bars. Located in Andersonville, Hopleaf is known for their awesome beer selection, fine foods, wines and Belgian specialties. Offering a casual, yet elegant atmosphere, Hopleaf offers a little something for everyone, whether you’re looking for a friendly neighborhood bar or a special night out. Events at Hopleaf include beer tastings hosted by local and visiting brewmasters, beer and cheese events hosted by the cheese makers, and beer release parties--there's a good reason this place is loved by beer-lovers.
Simon’s Tavern (5210 N Clark St, 773-878-0894) has everything a neighborhood bar should have: a great jukebox, friendly staff and patrons, affordable drinks, and, of course, Viking paraphernalia. Andersonville has a rich history with Swedish roots, and Simon’s Tavern is a part of that. Having been in Andersonville since the Great Depression, Simon’s is a staple of the area. It’s also a great place to grab a glogg, a Nordic mulled wine and Andersonville tradition.
Edgewater Lounge (5600 N Ashland, 773-878-3343) has an old-school feel to it. Despite its stained glass windows, Edgewater Lounge is no frills, a place meant to have friends gather and enjoy each other’s company. The back dining room at Edgewater Lounge sports a comfy fireplace and warm lighting for trying out some of their not-so-traditional bar fare like Cheddar Bisque, Fried Plantains, or Crab-Stuffed Wontons.
T’s Bar & Restaurant (5025 N Clark St, 773-784-6000) boast a comfortable, café-like atmosphere with great drink and food specials, a pool table, and karaoke every Sunday night. On Mondays you can get a burger for $5 and a double pint for just $6.50. Saturday and Sunday have similar deals, but there’s always something great and affordable to eat and drink at T’s Bar.
In Fine Spirits (5420 N Clark St, 773-334-9463) is a sophisticated wine bar offering a comfortable and open setting where a knowledgeable staff will help you explore their broad selection of wines, craft beers and spirits. In Fine Spirits has a menu of light but delectable fare to pair with that perfect beverage including pickled farm egg, duck confit rillette, day boat scallops, flat breads and deserts.
St Andrew’s Inn (5938 N Broadway St, 773-784-5540) offers a warm, cozy atmosphere with a wood bar, white tablecloths on the tables and big windows overlooking the street. Locals find the beer list impressive (over 100 beers) and the fish and chips to be some of the best in the city. Karaoke takes place on Wednesday nights, Thursday nights are Trivia Night and on weekends you’ll often hear live alternative and contemporary jazz.
The Neo-Futurists (5153 N Ashland Ave, 773-275-5255) are wacky. They’re insane. They’re completely off the wall. And if you attend one of their performances, you’ll be in for a wacky, insane, completely off the wall experience. It’s always a high-energy experience and you can expect the unexpected. But do expect to sometimes play Four-Square with the cast before an event, expect a “splash zone,” and do expect your cover charge to be partly based on the roll of a die. Performances have included Daredevil’s Hamlet and Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind.
Pressure Billiards Café (6318 N Clark St, 773-743-7665) has all your entertainment needs in one place. If you’re in the mood for live music, stand-up comedy, a café, a pool hall, community events, or just a good beer, Pressure Billiards Café will satisfy that on any given night. Monday through Thursday you can find great food and drink specials, and the café always tempts with tasty cocktails or a frothy latte.
The Swedish American Museum (5211 N Clark St, 773-728-8111) is a tribute to Andersonville’s rich culture and Nordic heritage. For just a few dollars you’ll be able to explore three floors of engrossing history, culture and art. Besides the exhibitions the Swedish American Museum puts on events like a Fried Herring Breakfast, Viking Spirit (their annual ball), Swedish knitting workshops, and more.
Edgewater is one of Chicago premiere dining destinations. Home to a whole host of choices, residents from all over Chicago come to Edgewater to experience fine dining as well as casual and cozy establishments.
M Henry (5707 N Clark St, 773-561-1600) brings fine dining to the breakfast and brunch experience. Focusing on healthy, fresh, vibrant ingredients with an artist’s touch, M Henry serves up creative, inspired dishes like their bliss cakes with pomegranate syrup, lemon and apricot French toast, candied bacon, and lemon crab and shrimp cake benedict, and more. It’s hard to read their menu without triggering irresistible cravings.
Moody’s Pub (5910 N Broadway St) cooks up some of the best burgers in town. The Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun Times, and Chicago Magazine all agree that Moody’s has the best burgers in the city. Comfort food that hits the spot and a setting reminiscent of a ski lodge with two roaring fire places keep patrons feeling good and coming back. They have a summer menu and winter menu, so you can associate the seasons specifically with Moody’s great food and drinks.
For excellent contemporary southern coastal cuisine, Big Jones (5347 N Clark St, 773-275-5725) in Andersonville is the place to dine. Big, bold flavors, Cajun spices, and dishes prepared with fresh, locally-grown, sustainably farmed foods are what Big Jones is committed to. Comfort food like shrimp and grits, fried green tomatoes, gumbo, and paneed catfish are just a few irresistible items on their menu.
Ethiopian Diamond Restaurant (6120 N Broadway St, 773-338-6100) offers a unique dining experience in Edgewater of authentic Ethiopian cuisine. Their menu consists of a good variety of vegetarian dishes like Shimbra Assa (chick pea dough cooked to look like a fish watt). Ethiopian Diamond Restaurant also features a wonderful selection of seafood, beef, lamb and chicken dishes.
Indie Café (5951 N Broadway St, 773-561-5577) serves up a surprising mix of Thai and sushi, so you’ll have plenty of options to choose from if you can’t decide between the two. Locals are big fans of their crab Rangoon, sweet potato maki, tom yum soup, basil chicken, and other appetizing items. Their Thai menu and Japanese menu are both extensive and inviting, and the restaurant is BYOB.
The Andersonville Midsommarfest is one of Chicago’s many summer festivals, but also one of its best. Attracting nearly 50,000 festival-goers each year, the Anderson Midsommarfest features two days of live music, dancing, fun events for the kids, and great foods. There are tons of vendor booths to browse and plenty of great bars and venues to visit nearby while attending.
St Lucia Festival of Lights is a nostalgic winter event inspired by the Sicilian tradition adopted by the Swedes. Starting at the Swedish American Museum, you’ll be treated to a candle-lit caroling procession down Clark Street. After the procession there’s family entertainment, winter treats, more caroling, and warm drinks to be had at the museum.
On St Morten’s Gos Day you can join Chicagoans in a lively celebration of the traditional Swedish holiday by raising a glass of glogg to friends and loved ones, enjoying music, and a whole host of people in Viking dress spreading good cheer and holiday glee.
The Andersonville Arts Weekend occurs each autumn celebrating the artwork of dozens of locals displayed in businesses and galleries throughout the neighborhood. It’s a terrific chance to stroll the streets of Edgewater while the weather is still crisp and take in the local flair.
Edgewater, located on Lake Michigan’s western shores, has plenty of beaches to take advantage of. Foster Avenue Beach is a great place to lie out in the sand and catch some rays. Osterman Beach is nearby and perfect for lounging, throwing the Frisbee around or walking along the sandy beach.
Besides the beaches, Edgewater is packed with parks, 16, in fact. Emmerson Park invites Edgewater condos owners to get out and play some tennis or take the kids out to the playground and spray pool. Preschool classes are taught at the park during winter months and day camp is available to the kids during summer.
Mellin Playlot Park is one of the first parks designed specifically for young children. At Broadway Armory Park you’ll find the largest indoor recreational facility of the Chicago Park District. A number of sports can be played at the facility including 3 on 3 soccer and floor hockey.
Warren Park is nearly 90 acres and the largest park of Chicago’s North Region. The park offers great activities and recreation yearlong with batting cages, bike paths, a 9-hole golf course, a racquet ball court, an outdoor ice rink in the winter, gyms, basketball courts, a playground and more.