Near West Side IL Homes & Real Estate

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Discovering Chicago's Near West Side

The Near West Side, one of the 77 community areas of Chicago, is a vibrant and historically significant neighborhood located on the western bank of the Chicago River, adjacent to the bustling Loop. This area has played a pivotal role in the city's history, witnessing significant events and transformations over the years. Search 2-4 unit multifamily homes for sale in the Near West Side Neighborhood, SIngle Family homes for sale in the Near West Side, and Condos and Townhomes For Sale in the Near West Side.

The Great Chicago Fire and Immigrant Waves

One of the most notable chapters in the Near West Side's history is it's unfortunate connection to the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, which originated in this very neighborhood. This devastating event reshaped the landscape of the area and the entire city. However, from the ashes of destruction arose a community that thrived and evolved.

Waves of immigrants, particularly Greek and Italian communities, have left an indelible mark on the Near West Side. They brought with them their rich cultures, traditions, and cuisines, which continue to influence the neighborhood to this day.

Hull House and Settlement Houses

During the late 19th century, the Near West Side became home to Hull House, a pioneering settlement house founded by Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr. Hull House served as a haven for immigrants and provided educational and social support to those in need. It played a pivotal role in shaping social reform and the welfare system in the United States.

Railroads and the Mid-20th Century Development

The 19th century saw the emergence of railroads as prominent features of the Near West Side. These railroads facilitated trade and transportation, contributing to the neighborhood's growth and prosperity.

In the mid-20th century, the area underwent significant changes with the development of freeways, notably the Jane Byrne Interchange, which further connected the Near West Side to the rest of the city.

Education and Landmarks

Today, the Near West Side is home to several educational institutions, including the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), Chicago-Kent College of Law, and City Colleges' Malcolm X College. These institutions have become integral parts of the community, contributing to its diversity and vibrancy.

The United Center arena, a mecca for sports and entertainment, graces the neighborhood with its presence. Additionally, the Illinois Medical District, Union Station, Ogilvie Station, and the Jane Byrne Interchange are key landmarks that define the character of this community area.

Neighborhoods within the Near West Side

West Loop

The West Loop, a district along the western bank of the Chicago River, encompasses Fulton River, Fulton Market, and Greektown. It has become a culinary hotspot with acclaimed restaurants like Girl and the Goat and Leña Brava. The district has experienced rapid gentrification, transforming former industrial spaces into loft condominiums, art galleries, and thriving businesses.

Fulton River District and Fulton Market

The Fulton River District, located on the northeastern edge of the Near West Side, offers a mix of commercial and residential spaces. It is home to the Ogilvie Transportation Center and is known for the delightful aroma emanating from the Blommer Chocolate Company.


Greektown, centered along Halsted Street between Van Buren and Madison Streets, was once predominantly Greek. Today, while the Greek influence has diminished, it remains a vibrant restaurant and nightlife corridor. The National Hellenic Museum stands as a testament to the area's Greek heritage.

Little Italy

Situated between the Illinois Medical District and UIC's east campus, Little Italy is a testament to Italian-American culture. Landmarks such as the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompei and Italian-American social clubs continue to celebrate this heritage.

University Village/Maxwell Street

University Village, near the UIC campus, has a rich history, including its past as a weekly outdoor market and its contribution to the development of Chicago Blues. It has since undergone redevelopment, featuring dormitories, commercial buildings, and housing.

South Water Market

The historic South Water Market, originally located along the Chicago River, has transformed into a mixed-use retail and housing area. This redevelopment has breathed new life into the neighborhood.

Illinois Medical District

One of the largest medical districts in the United States, the Illinois Medical District is home to major medical institutions and research centers, including John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital, Rush University Medical Center, and the University of Illinois College of Medicine.


Adjacent to the Illinois Medical District, Tri-Taylor is a diverse residential neighborhood. It has been influenced by various cultures and is home to institutions like Chicago Technology Park and Chicago Hope Academy.

United Center Area

The United Center, a renowned sports and entertainment venue, anchors this area. While it was once associated with high crime rates, the neighborhood has seen transformations and improvements over the years.

In conclusion, the Near West Side is a dynamic and culturally rich community area in Chicago. Its history, marked by the Great Chicago Fire, immigration waves, and social reform efforts, has shaped its character. Today, it continues to evolve, offering a diverse range of experiences and attractions that make it a vibrant part of the city's tapestry.



Near West Side June 16, 2024
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