For many, Lakeview and Wrigleyville are synonymous neighborhoods. They border each other, have similar communities, and are adjacent to Lake Michigan. But both have distinct differences to note before moving to these northside neighborhoods. If you plan to relocate to Lakeview or Wrigleyville, here are some things to know before making your choice.
Founded in 1854, Lakeview was first recognized as an independent township outside Chicago’s city borders. Wealthier Chicagoans were flocking to the new suburban area as a refuge from the hustle and bustle of the downtown scene.
Over the next thirty years, Lakeview began building its infrastructure, gaining new railroads and a town hall in the suburb’s center. By 1889, the town was successfully annexed into the City of Chicago, beginning its historical legacy as part of its blooming northside identity.
By the early 1900s, Lakeview was a critical spot for shopping and entertainment. One of its most notable achievements was the construction of Wrigley Field in 1914. Chicago’s west-side baseball team, the Cubs, was moved east to the new field shortly after its development. The neighborhood’s new team brought countless residents and tourists to the stadium, bolstering the general reverence for Chicago’s recently incorporated neighborhood.
After Wrigley Field was built, the surrounding area began to create its own identity. In 1920, the residential streets parallel to the stadium became unofficially known as Wrigleyville. The name stuck, with residents still using this neighborhood identifier 100 years later. Since its inception, Wrigleyville has garnered its own distinguishing qualities, like its vibrant bars along Lincoln Avenue and densely populated sidestreets.
Today, Wrigleyville has a wide age range of residents; from multigenerational families to young 20-somethings, the neighborhood has something beneficial for everyone.
The first thing to know about Lakeview is that it’s a large neighborhood on Chicago’s north side. Since it’s so massive, the community is divided into different subsects, including Lakeview East, Lakeview West, Boystown, and the Southport Corridor. Each section has its benefits, so knowing exactly what you want in an apartment could make this search easier.
If proximity to the lake is imperative to you, then Lakeview East will probably be the area for you. Though it might be harder to find affordable prices, its adjacency to the water and Chicago’s impeccable greenery are well worth the money. Boystown is also situated in Lakeview East, named after its booming LGBTQ+ nightlife along Halsted Street. Lakeview East is a great area to investigate if you’re looking to live closer to bars, clubs, and lively restaurants.
A little farther from the action are Lakeview West and the Southport Corridor. Both localities are great for shopping and dining out, with quaint streets perfect for families and those looking for quieter living spots. But don’t be fooled by its subdued demeanor, Lakeview West’s plethora of venues, restaurants, and bars make it a quality neighborhood for an enthralling evening too.
Wrigleyville begins slightly below Addison Avenue and extends a few blocks north of the stadium. Though highly populated, the neighborhood occupies a minuscule portion of the larger Lakeview area. Finding a spot inside the perimeter of Wrigleyville might be hard to find due to its size, but it’s not impossible.
Though you might feel inclined to move to Wrigleyville because of your love for the Chicago Cubs, the neighborhood offers much more than its sport-affiliated entertainment. Directly across from Wrigley Field to the west is one of the city’s premier dance clubs Smartbar. It’s been operating for almost 40 years and was a crucial part of the blossoming house music scene in the 1980s. You can also catch an incredible rock show in the building’s main venue, the Metro, which features hundreds of local and traveling acts every year.
Clark Street in Wrigleyville also hosts some incredible eateries and taverns. Walking south of the stadium, you’ll find barbecue spots, oyster bars, and, of course, Chicago-style hot dogs. Wrigleyville is a great neighborhood to explore for those wanting entertainment and quality restaurants within walking distance.
Though many outside Chicago might conflate Lakeview and Wrigleyville, both areas have key differences that set them apart. When looking into renting on Chicago’s northside, it’s essential to know the subsections of the larger neighborhoods to ensure you’re settling in the perfect spot for you.