Until hundreds of new housing units are added to the Lathrop Homes complex in the somewhat distant future, new riverfront housing will remain at a premium. Two multi-phase developments on the opposite bank, one north of Diversey and one north of Belmont, supply the bulk of the desirable detached and semi-detached homes on the North Branch and they’re almost out of land. Wilmette-based Jenny Builders holds the deeds to the newest set of town homes and condos now finishing up within the River Walk community at the border of Logan Square, Avondale, and West Lakeview.
Four of the three-level town homes at 2823 and 2825 North Oakley Avenue have sold within the developer’s fixed price range of $549,900 to $564,900, and two more have closed well above ask with buyer customizations. The median town home sale price in Avondale, just to the west, is $403,000. “The first town home sold last October before a shovel went in the ground,” says co-listing agent Brendan O’Malley of Conlon Real Estate.
Eleven of the spec-built homes are identical 2,500-square-footers and the other four are slightly wider models. Versatility in the floor plan means buyers have been busy shuffling living and dining rooms and assigning either bedroom or family room furniture to the isolated ground floor space. The kitchen is the anchor of the main floor and comes appointed with Viking appliances and quartz counters. A large window count—high efficiency Pella windows—and an ornate fireplace add substance to the other living spaces.
The four condos going up across Oakley are tailored to the demographic most focused on this part of the riverfront—young families. Three are 1,700-square-foot full-floor three-beds and the lower unit is a duplex-down with 2,900 square-feet of living space. Jenny Builders are moving forward with another condo building of undetermined size in the New Year—four or five floors on the site of a low-slung warehouse. Construction should start next summer. With Walsh Development putting up five single-family homes on a site just south of here, looking beyond Lathrop there won’t be any new significant riverfront development in the area unless green space and views are wrenched away; or, until the day high-rises reach Avondale.
“Buyers looking in the neighborhood don’t realize what a gem of a spot this is,” says Jenny Builders principal Art Gurevich. “You can leave your windows open at night and it’s dead quiet, and everything you need is two blocks away.”