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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Mathena

Moving to Irving Park Chicago, IL Neighborhood Guide

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

Moving to Irving Park Chicago, IL Neighborhood Guide

Step into the vibrant tapestry of life in Irving Park, our beloved Chicago neighborhood. As your local Irving Park moving company, we're thrilled to guide you through this historic gem tucked away on the northwest side. Irving Park is where quiet vintage charm meets modern urban living, where diverse cultures flourish, and where the warmth of community is palpable. Join us as we unveil the highlights of living here – from its rich heritage and architecture to the convenience of city life and the spirit of togetherness that defines the neighborhood. Welcome to Irving Park – your new home, your new beginning.

Irving Park History and Overview

Originating from businessman Charles T. Race's purchase of acreage in 1869, Irving Park was initially called Irvington as a tribute to Washington Irving before being renamed Irving Park. Race's visionary approach saw the establishment of a depot, leading to increased connectivity through the Chicago & North Western railroad. The Irving Park Land Company was formed, subdividing land into lots and promoting the district's accessibility to downtown.

An enclave for affluent residents seeking spacious homes, Irving Park's charm extended to the middle class. Active community involvement and the formation of organizations characterized the neighborhood. Challenges such as floods and poor drainage accompanied the area's growth. The 20th century brought changes in ethnic composition, as Germans and Swedes gave way to Poles and Russians.

During the depression and war years many of the larger homes were turned in boarding houses or multi-family residences. In the 1960s the construction of the Kennedy Expressway through Irving Park saw many residents and businesses displaced.

The 1980s marked a renaissance with the Old Irving Park Association (OIPA) focusing on house rehabilitation and community betterment, while the Old Irving Park Historical Society (OIPHS) championed preservation through house walks and landmark designations. The neighborhood's history speaks of unity, preservation, and adaptability, reflecting the dynamic spirit that defines its past and present.

What is it Like to Live in Irving Park?

Irving Park features a collection of single-family homes, offering residents the opportunity to experience suburban-style living within the city limits. One of the standout features of Irving Park is its architectural diversity. The neighborhood showcases a blend of historic homes representing different styles, including Victorian, Queen Anne, Italianate, and bungalow. These well-preserved residences contribute to the area's charm and provide residents with a sense of living in a place with character and history. There is also some new construction in the area such as modern townhomes. In addition to single-family homes, Irving Park also offers multi-unit buildings, such as two- and three-flats.

  • According to Redfin, as of September 2023, the average home price is $500K, up 5.6% compared to last year.

  • RentCafe states that the average apartment rent is $1,361 which is 39% lower than the Chicago average rent of $2,215.

  • 48.1% of Irving Park residents are renters while 51.9% are homeowners.

  • Irving Park has a Walk Score of 85 making it very walkable. Its Transit Score is 66 and Bike Score is 76.

  • According to Niche, Irving Park is the 34th best neighborhood for young professionals and the 39th neighborhood to raise a family in Chicago. Its overall Niche grade is B+.

  • The population is 51,940 per the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning.

  • The median age is approximately 36.6.

  • The median household income is $78,944.

  • Niche gives Irving Park a grade of C for crime and safety.

Irving Park Chicago Location

Irving Park is located seven miles Northwest of downtown Chicago. It is a community area divided into the smaller neighborhoods of California Park, Independence Park, Kilbourn Park, Old Irving Park, South Old Irving Park, and The Villa. Nearby neighborhoods include Albany Park, Avondale, Belmont Gardens, Lincoln Square, North Center, and Portage Park.

The approximate boundaries of the Irving Park community area are the Northern boundary 4400 North (Montrose Avenue) from the Chicago River to Elston Avenue then stretches up along Elston Avenue to 4800 North (Lawrence Avenue), the Southern boundary 3600 North (Addison Street) from the Chicago River to 4000 West (Pulaski Road) then South to 3200 North (Belmont Avenue), the Western boundary boundary primarily 4600 West (Kenton Avenue, the Metra/Milwaukee District North Line, and Cicero Avenue), and the Eastern boundary runs along the Chicago River. The Irving Park zip codes are 60618, 60630, and 60641.

Irving Park is rated B+ by Niche for commute and has good transit with a Transit Score of 66. The CTA Blue Line has three stops in Irving Park at Addison, Irving Park, and Montrose. The Metra Milwaukee District North line stops in Irving Park at Grayland station. Several bus routes also run through the area. The Kennedy Expressway runs through Irving Park making a convenient commute to downtown Chicago as well as the northern and northwestern suburbs. To downtown Chicago, it takes approximately 35 minutes by car and 45 minutes by public transportation.

Map of Irving Park, Chicago, IL

Irving Park Restaurants

Irving Park offers a diverse dining scene with a focus on comfort and global flavors. The neighborhood's cultural richness is reflected in its range of ethnic eateries, serving cuisines such as Columbian, Mexican, Italian, and Serbian. Whether you're in the mood for a mouthwatering slice of pizza or an adventurous exploration of international flavors, Irving Park has something to satisfy every palate.

Serbian cafe offering a taste of the old world with dishes such as chevapchici and burek.

Casual spot with a large menu featuring Peruvian favorites such as pollo a la brasa, lomo saltado, and papa a la huancaina.

Contemporary Mexican cuisine, skillfully crafted from the chef's hometown influences, cherished family recipes, and the finest seasonal ingredients. Tequila bar offers a selection of expertly mixed margaritas, craft cocktails, and a variety of other beverages.

Favorite spot for plentiful quality portions of Chinese classics.

Warm and inviting joint offering a diverse menu of Italian dishes, ranging from classic pasta creations to delectable pizza options and more.

Charming Italian steakhouse exuding a nostalgic vibe serving classic Italian fare.

Columbian bakery and pizzeria.

Journey to Morocco in this cozy restaurant that showcases a selection of beloved Moroccan dishes such as tagines and couscous. Cash only and BYOB.

Laid back barbeque joint highly regarded for its authentic and flavorful barbecue offerings such as brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and sausage.

Irving Park Bars

Irving Park offers an array of neighborhood bar options, including cozy local pubs, sports bars for watching games, and dive bars. With a local and community-driven vibe, these bars provide a welcoming environment for residents and visitors to enjoy drinks, socialize, and experience the neighborhood's relaxed and down-to-earth atmosphere.

Casual neighborhood bar to eat some good pub grub, have a few drinks, watch sports or a band, and play pool.

Festive Irish pub with a decent selection of craft beers and classic bar food. They often feature events such as trivia and bingo.

Friendly Australian neighborhood bar offering craft beer and other drinks. They feature tap takeovers often.

Chill bar with a backwoods vibe.

Irving Park Breweries and Wineries

Women-owned brewery and brewpub specializing in crafting a selection of ciders and a curated variety of beers. Menu features upscale pub fare such as steak frites and shrimp and grits.

Award-winning craft brewery and gastropub featuring the finest local ingredients. Many of the menu items are prepared on a wood-fired grill which adds a smoky flavor to pair nicely with the beer.

Irving Park Coffee Shops

Neighborhood gem for coffee drinks featuring their roasted beans and a selection of donuts and pastries.

Relaxed spot for coffee drinks and breakfast or lunch items with a Mexican spin.

New chocolate shop with an espresso bar, drinking chocolate, pastries, and food items.

Unique Places to Shop in North Center

Irving Park offers a selection of thrift stores and a handful of locally owned stores. Shoppers looking for more diverse options can venture beyond Irving Park's borders. Just outside of Irving Park lies the vibrant hub of Marketplace at Six Corners, situated in Portage Park, where a wider range of shopping opportunities awaits, making it a complementary destination for those seeking a more expansive retail experience.

Used jazz and blues vinyl as well as other genres.

Antique and vintage furniture store specializing in unique pieces.

Art, Music and Theater Venues in Logan Square

Rock and roll bar featuring live music.

Neighborhood joint with eclectic music and other events.

Outdoor Activities in Irving Park

Park featuring an ADA accessible playground, ball fields, basketball, tennis, and pickleball courts, ceramics classes, and a field house.

Park featuring the McFetridge Sports Center with indoor tennis courts and an ice rink. Other amenities include playgrounds, basketball court, and a swimming pool.

Prominent community park offering sports fields, playgrounds, a dog-friendly area, green spaces, and a riverfront. It hosts various community events and serves as a hub for recreational activities and gatherings. Features a weekly farmers market from June through October.

Neighborhood park with a gymnasium, fitness center, indoor pool, playground, tennis court, and more. Features a farmers market from June through October on the 2n an 4th Sunday each month.

Grocery Stores in Irving Park, Chicago

Windy City Produce Inc

Gyms in Irving Park

Dry Cleaners in Irving Park, Chicago

Irving Park Post Office

Other Helpful Information

As your local moving experts, we understand that relocating to a new neighborhood is more than just a change of address; it's an exciting chapter waiting to be written. Whether you're drawn to Irving Park's historical allure, its welcoming community, or its convenient urban connections, we're here to ensure your move is seamless and stress-free. Let us be your partner in making Irving Park your new home. Contact our Irving Park Movers today to embark on this exciting journey together.

Blog authored by Michelle Mathena, President of Under One Roof, a local moving company in Chicago. Michelle has over 20 years of experience in the moving industry. Under One Roof has had thousands of satisfied customers since 1982.

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