Hyde Park, Chicago- Can anyone tell me about it? - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-23-2008, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hey! We're moving back to Chicago this summer and trying to find a neighborhood to settle in. We've mostly been considering communities on the North side. However, I have heard some good things about Hyde Park.

I'm a little wary though because I've always had a bad image of the "south side" (whether or not that is correct....that's just always what I've thought). I've always heard that the south side is not that safe or good for families.

So....what is Hyde Park like?
Is it safe?
Family Friendly?
How is public transportation to places like Navy Pier, Field Museum etc?
Things to do with kids?

Thanks so much to anyone who can give me insight!

Jessica, wife to Mark, homeschooling mama to Micah (2006), Noah (2009), Owen (2012) and another on the way this August (20014)
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Old 02-24-2008, 02:48 PM
 
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I don't live in Hyde Park but have a few friends that do. It is a really nice area-close to Lake Michigan, with many restaurants around. Many people from the University of Chicago live there (professors, students). I know of some fairs in the summer that take place around there.

My understanding of Public transportation is that it's fairly easy to get downtown on a bus-anywhere else will take forever. If you want to take the El you have to ride west for awhile into a dicey neighborhood.

I like the area, and I've seen some affordable places to live. For us it's a little inconvinient since I work on the north side. My partner works close to UIC-and we live right next to the blue line which drops her off pretty much right in front of where she works. However since I'm a runner-I often drive down there for my longer runs as Lake Michigan is beautiful there and the running path is much less crowded.

Karen, mother to a wonderful active three year old.
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Old 02-24-2008, 07:38 PM
 
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i live on the north side, however hyde park is not what i would really consider to be south side at all. it is very safe. the community is well educated and ethnically diverse. i have visited and thought it had a thriving little district for shopping, restaurants, hanging out, strolling etc.....i would say it is family friendly, has good transportation and easy access to navy pier and the field museum. another good thing is chicago pretty much has great parks in any neighborhood you live in, hyde park being no exception. good luck wherever you land!
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Old 02-25-2008, 04:39 PM
 
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I live in Hyde Park and have for 13 out of the past 14 years. I moved here from Brooklyn, NY. I went to the University for law school and decided to stay. Much less congested that the north side and since I had no need for the bar scene, I was content to stay here.

I take the bus to work every day and am at least 10 blocks west of the lake. I walk the length of my alley to get the bus and 1 block once I get off. I used to take the Metra train when I lived closer to the lake. I work out at the gym 4 blocks from my house. I love, love, love the Waldorf daycare/pre-school where we started sending dd last month. This weekend she and I did our regular run of Borders and the library. Treasure Island moves in soon, having taken over the local grocery store and our produce store just expanded into a larger space. Love it! There is a dance school over by the University where I took belly dancing classes long ago and I need to check it out now for dd.

It is definitely family friendly. There is a park right behind our building and another about 2 blocks away that we visit as well.

Is it safe? As safe as any other part of the city. There are random acts of violence on the north side as well as in Hyde Park.

What else can I tell you?

Mama to add 10/05; ds 3/09, and two angels
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Old 02-25-2008, 08:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrose_lee View Post
I'm a little wary though because I've always had a bad image of the "south side" (whether or not that is correct....that's just always what I've thought). I've always heard that the south side is not that safe or good for families.

So....what is Hyde Park like?
Is it safe?
Family Friendly?
How is public transportation to places like Navy Pier, Field Museum etc?
Things to do with kids?

Thanks so much to anyone who can give me insight!
Well I grew up in Chicago and spent my childhood split between the northside and the southside and I gotta say while there are some less than savory areas on the southside there are some less than savory areas on the northside too. Plenty of folks raise families on the southside, not really sure why you would think otherwise.

To answer your question, Hyde Park is a nice area, in fact my lil brother just moved from the Gold Coast to Hyde Park, I always had plenty of friends who lived in Hyde Park and it always reminded me a bit of Evanston. I think Honeybunmom summed up the area well, right now I am in Maine but should I move back to Chicago, Hyde Park is a area I would consider, since the downside to most of the popular areas of the northside is the congestion.

I admit I don't have a lot to add but as a equal parts southsider/northsider I have always hated how people assume the southside is a bad place.

Shay

Mothering since 1992...its one of the many hats I wear.
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Old 02-25-2008, 08:56 PM
 
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We live in Berwyn Now, but my Dp lived in Hyde Park for 9 years, and we're seriously considering moving back. I love the idea of living so close to the beach, and the community is diverse and friendly. Both my Dp's Job and Dd's school are in Hyde Park. I used to live in Rogers Park, which is lakefront at the North end, and loved being so close to the lake. The only thing I don't like is the lack of CTA train access, but I'm spoiled as the farthest I've ever lived from a CTA stop is about 6 blocks (that's how far I am now).
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Old 02-29-2008, 12:59 AM
 
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We dont' live in Hyde Park but have friends that do. (We live in University Village, which is technically also the south side). Hyde Park is a nice neighborhood - definitely as nice as any other, and pretty affordable. The El isn't so great down there, but the South Shore metra is good and quick, and the CTA busses do pretty well too. Lots of good resturants, parks etc.

The north side is definitely getting over developed and is expensive, IMHO. Other neighborhoods you might consider:
South Loop - close to the lake, still pretty affordable but getting expensive
U. Village, near UIC - or the surrounding neighborhood - ditto with south loop. A bit farther from the lake but still close. Near to lots of public transit etc. great food in this area.
Bridgeport (or is it Bronzeville? I always get them mixed up - whatever is near Sox park down by 31st) - lots of people from my neighborhood are actually buying single family homes in this area becsuse it's a lot cheaper and they want the extra space. This is sort of the area north of Hyde Park and south of U Village.

Most importantly I suggest you live near where you work. Whether it's a one-bus shot, one-shot on the el, or walking or biking distance, minimizing the amount of time that you or your husband spends commuting makes a HUGE difference in your quality of life! We lived in Lakeview for a year and my commute took 45 minutes even with just a single bus line. Now we live 1.5 miles from my work and I can either walk it or ride my bike or drive - no matter what it's super fast, and that measn I have more time for my family.

Mom to James (ribboncesarean.gif 5/2006), Claire (vbac.gif 6/2008), furry kitties Calvin and Bob, and wife to Dennis. 

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