Big-city living is the dream for many, but that can mean different things. The bohemian, counter-culture vibe is San Francisco’s lure, while Los Angeles is about being hip to the next big thing and New York is the Center of the Universe (just ask a native).
Chicago? It has everything those cities have, but with a dose of midwestern warmth and balance. Diverse ethnic enclaves, corporate headquarters and high culture stand shoulder to big shoulder in a metro area that offers four seasons, all the pro sports and bountiful educational opportunities, all with a cost of living that — by urban standards — is decidedly reasonable.
So, what is it like living in Chicago? Here goes …
Living in Layers
As the old line goes: Don’t like the weather? Wait five minutes.
Chicago’s winters pack a punch, and summers can feature many hot and humid days. However, know that golfers routinely play from April through November. Runners pound the pavement year-round. Sweaters and shorts are not an unusual combination.
Living in Chicago is to know fall colors, the sound of a heat-wave-breaking thunderstorm and claiming dibs by marking with lawn chairs the parking space you’ve just shoveled out. Just bring an extra jacket. You’ll be fine.
The Price Is Right
One of the best things about living in Chicago, comparatively speaking, is the cost of living. Among the 74 most populous cities in the United States, Chicago ranks smack dab in the middle at No. 37 for living costs while sitting at No. 25 for median individual income.
You’ll Get Around
Chicago’s grid street system is easy to learn. Many neighborhoods are super walkable, and the city is very bike friendly. Public transportation includes eight CTA train lines serving 145 stations around the city, 129 CTA bus routes and 11 Metra rail lines connecting dozens of suburbs to jobs and fun in the city. Five interstates run into Chicago, making other cities such as Milwaukee, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Detroit an easy drive. Two metro airports make further destinations quickly reachable, as well.
You’ll Find Your Fun
Whatever you’re into, Chicago has it. Lollapalooza has made Chicago its home since 2005. House music was born here, and Labor Day weekend’s ARC Music Festival celebrates it. Festival season runs from May through October, so you’ll have opportunities to celebrate everything from LGBTQ pride to barbecue to local artists and more.
Then there’s the Theater District, which routinely gets shows ready for Broadway or is the first stop when national touring companies take New York hits on the road; and the Museum Campus, where three museums sit on a 57-acre lakefront parcel just a mildly ambitious walk past Buckingham Fountain to the Art Institute and Millennium Park. Plus, the Loop is just a quick cab ride from any number of proudly ethnic neighborhoods such as Chinatown, Little Italy, Greektown and Ukrainian Village.
Homing in on Your Home
Answering the question “What is it like to live in Chicago?” can depend largely on the vantage point from which you choose to view it. Whether you’re a fierce foodie, artsy, an academic, a club kid or a corporate climber, Chicago has a neighborhood for you. Mo2 can show you the best properties in the perfect areas, so reach out to us today.