Forget Wicker Park and Logan Square — Avondale is the hot new West Side neighborhood.
With hip heavyweight ‘hoods next door, close proximity to the highway, lots of shopping and reasonably priced housing, Avondale — recently named “Neighborhood of the Year” by Curbed.com — has the best of all worlds. The boot-shaped, on-the-rise area is bordered by the North Branch of the Chicago River, Addison Street, Pulaski Road, the Union Pacific/Northwest rail line and Diversey Avenue. “You can head a few blocks south or east to the well-established shops, eateries and watering holes in Logan Square and Roscoe Village, get downtown in 10 minutes and properties average about 25 to 30 percent less here,” notes longtime resident and @properties broker Patrick Schell (773-960-6940). Thanks to those stats, good properties sell fast: last fall, Schell’s listing for a three-bedroom, one-bathroom 1890s charmer got multiple offers and sold in 24 hours for $5,000 more than the list price. The area is rich with vintage houses, walkups and new-construction developments, but “the best values are the single-family houses, both new and old,” says Schell. Especially those he calls “box houses” — the ultra-modern, new construction, open-plan smart-tech houses that are the specialty of a handful of builders. “The sustainable houses are attainable here,” says Schell. One example is 3120 N. Sacramento (shown above), a 2,400-square-foot, four-bedroom 2.5-bathroom. It’s Energy Star-rated, with tankless H2O, LOBA-sealed oak floors, no-VOC paint, LEED finishes, European cabinetry and a stunning floating staircase to boot for $424,000 (contact North Clybourn Group broker Karen Biazar, 773-645-7900; Karen@northclybourngroup.com).
If you like what you’ve seen so far, you’ll love the ultra-modern number going up at 3101 N. Bernard. The new-construction four-bedroom, 3.5-bath single-family has 3,000 square feet and will feature a chef’s kitchen upon completion (contact Prudential Rubloff agent Jeremy Scott Fisher, 312-268-0644; Jfisher@rubloff.com). For a sweet 2,000-square-foot, three-bed, two-bath town house, consider 3651 W. Cornelia, unit D, shown above (contact Century 21 United broker Glen Tomlinson, 773-807-1109; Gtomillion@gmail.com). And 3240 N. California, unit 2N, a 1,050-square-foot, two-bed, two-bath condo, is a great value at $197,500 (contact @properties broker Blair Thrush Lele, 847-363-5436; Blair@atproperties.com).
Cottage Industry’s Big Bloom vase uses lightweight Fresnel lenses (think traffic lights, televisions, projectors and more) to turn a single stem into a major statement ($54.95 at the Museum of Contemporary Art Store, 220 E. Chicago, Mcachicagostore.org).
Story by Lisa Skolnik