Determined to live in the city but worried about safety? Welcome to the neighborhood! With vanishingly small rates of violent and property crime—in part because of its large population of city police and fire department personnel—this Far Northwest Side enclave is the safest in Chicago. Edison Park also excels in housing affordability. The typical household here pays only about four times its annual income to buy a house. Contrast that with the Near North Side, where a household pays 21 times its income.

A short walk from the Metra station is a small downtown dotted with restaurants (trattorias, a chophouse, the gloriously gaudy Moretti’s on Olmsted Avenue). You’ll move here not for the cultural amenities—there’s little to do at night besides dine—but for Edison Park’s considerable family friendliness. Ten-acre Olympia Park offers a huge range of sports programs for all ages, and high-performing Ebinger Elementary has a special arts magnet program. Filled with bungalows and Craftsman cottages on well-kept lots, this place is classic Chicago.