Love it or hate it, Lincoln Park is one of the most desirable neighborhoods in Chicago. Between its rich history, attractive housing, and proximity to downtown, it’s no wonder people want to live here. The name of this community area comes from the city’s largest park, which was established along Lake Michigan in 1860 as Lake Park (five years later it was renamed to honor the assassinated president). Much of the area was destroyed during the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, so the massive effort to rebuild led to a mix of wooden cottages, Italianate-style row houses, and stone Richardsonian Romanesque residences. Beginning in the 1910s and 20s, luxury residential properties were built along the major streets overlooking the park, like Marlborough Apartments. New residents to the city might not be aware that most of Lincoln Park was a slum after WWII. Dramatic gentrification took place in the 1970s when the low-income neighborhood became the affluent community we see today. From a high-quality Victorian in the Mid-North District to a couple of multi-unit residential buildings overlooking the park, there are some terrific properties currently for sale in Lincoln Park.
Described as one of the city’s most beautiful residential streets, the two-block area of 500-600 Fullerton Parkway is like walking through an outdoor architectural museum, which I did many times when I lived in the area 20 years ago. On the market for the first time since 1965, the six-bedroom, five-bathroom High Victorian with elaborate stone facade and covered front porch was once a boarding house. Historic home lovers will rejoice at all of the beautiful details inside, like an intricately carved stair rail, pocket doors, stained glass windows, hardwood flooring, and elaborate fireplace mantels with tiles of seashells and fairies. Let’s hope whoever buys this time capsule respects its history and architectural integrity.
Here is a remnant of Lincoln Park’s industrial past, which exploded along the North Branch of the Chicago River beginning in the 1880s. Once a factory and laboratory that made injection molds and calibration instruments, this two-bedroom, two-bathroom loft is full of character and charm with a wood-burning fireplace, exposed brick walls, and wood timber beams. The ground-level unit has its own private entrance so all the restaurants and shops of the neighborhood are right outside your door. Plus it’s only one block away from the Armitage ‘L’ Brown Line stop and close to Oz Park and the DePaul University campus.
One of the city’s most beautiful vintage buildings is located on the northwest corner of Lakeview and Deming directly across from Lincoln Park’s North Pond. Designed by Robert De Golyer, the architect behind many of the fortress-like high rises you see along the lake, the Marlborough Apartments was planned as a semi cooperative in 1912. From the elegant lobby, you’ll take the elevator up to this cozy but cute one-bedroom, one-bathroom condo. Listed at $242,500 with $635 monthly HOA fees (which includes heat, water, cable, and insurance), the Marlborough is an affordable option when compared to the neighboring properties in this part of East Lincoln Park.
A unit inside the last residential high-rise in Chicago designed by world-famous architect Mies van der Rohe is currently available for $359,000. Sitting high in the sky on the 14th floor is this 1,100-square-foot two-bedroom, two-bathroom condo with an open floor plan. While you can enjoy the sunset views from inside your own digs, the building also comes with outdoor space on the rooftop. The $938 monthly fees cover heat, air conditioning, water, insurance, cable tv, and pool. There is a 24-hour door person as well as an on-site manager and engineer. But the best part is that the park and lake are right outside your door.
Unsurprisingly, this East Lincoln Park corner row house that was renovated with the latest trends is already contingent — less than a month after hitting the market. The 3,334-square-foot four-bedroom, three-bathroom residence comes with an attached single-car garage directly below the deck right off the kitchen, as well as additional outdoor space. Modern updates include an all-white kitchen, primary bedroom suite with spa-like bathroom and walk-in closet, and a basement family room with stone fireplace and radiant floor heating. The home is literally just steps away from everything that Lincoln Park has to offer, including the zoo, conservatory, and farmer’s market.