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Chicago Has Some Pretty Bananas Street Names

From Hurlbut St. to Carondolet Ave., the city’s wonkiest odonyms

A prime intersection   Photo: Google Maps

There’s something so damn funny about the name “Whipple Street.” Albany Parkers, Logan Squarers, and Beverly residents alike know this joyous moniker well, given that the road runs directly north-to-south through all three neighborhoods, just west of Sacramento Avenue. I have a distinct memory of my JV girls soccer team once devolving into a fit of giggles on the school bus when our coach said “Whipple Street” — so much so that it became our rallying cry that season.

Recently, Twitter user @henryz pointed out the delight this name elicits, which got us thinking: Which Chicago street names give Whipple a run for its money? A deep dive into Google maps (and the city’s exhaustive data) turned up some serious contenders.

Streets we inexplicably chuckle at every time:

Busse Ave.
Crilly Ct.
Gole Dr.
Hoey St.
Hooker St.
Hurlbut St.
Laflin St.
Lovejoy Ave.
Tonty Ave.
Whipple St.

Streets that share your grandparents’ names:

Cyril Ave.
Delphia Ave.
Evelyn Ln.
Hazel St.
Hortense Ave.
Jean Ave.
Joyce Ln.
Leona Ave.
Leroy Ave.
Luella Ave.
Tom Pkwy.

Streets you mispronounced at first if you moved here from somewhere else:

Carondolet Ave.
Dowagiac Ave.
Goethe St.​
Honore St.
Mies Van Der Rohe Way
Paulina St.
Wabansia Ave.

Streets that are not Fullerton:

Cullerton St.

Streets with way too many modifiers:

East Drive of Oakley Ave.
North Water Lower Street
South Water Ramp Lower Street
Sub Lower Wacker Drive

The California Streets:

Alta Vista Terrace
California Ave.
Francisco Ave.
Mango Ave.
Pool Dr.
Sacramento Ave.
Surf St.
Weed St.

Streets that sound like they should be in other cities:

Avenues A, B, and C
Central Park Ave.
Churchill Row
Commonwealth Ave.
Harlem Ave.
Harvard Ave.
Narragansett Ave.
New England Ave.
Pensacola Ave.
Ponchartrain Blvd.
Wall St.
Yale Ave.

Streets with elegant French-ass names:

Beaubien Ct.
Dauphin Ave.
Midway Plaisance​
Paris Ave.

Streets better pronounced with a British accent:

Cheltenham Pl.
Commodore Whalen Dr.
Creiger Ave.*
Eggleston Ave.
Elbridge Ave.
Finsbury Ct.
*Even better with a Scottish accent

Streets that sound like someone tried to mash up “Milwaukee” and “Baltimore”:

Miltimore Ave.

Streets that are probably a circle of hell:

Dante Ave.

Streets names that sound like they came from a novel:

Attrill Ave.
Corliss Ave.
​De Koven St.
Gullikson Rd.
Kanst Dr.
Kerbs Ave.
Kercheval Ave.
Latrobe Ave.
Metron Dr.

The absolute best street name:

Ida B. Wells Drive

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