The Hyde Park-Kenwood District, located on the South Side of Chicago, is notable for its architecture and diversity. Located on the Lake Michigan shore seven miles south of the Chicago Loop, this quaint, charming neighborhood is suffused with historic buildings and is home to the Museum of Science and Industry and The University of Chicago.
Despite that Hyde Park has a large amount of property associated with the University, the historic district is mostly dotted with residential homes and buildings. Due to the shared culture and history of the two areas, Kenwood is officially considered the southern part of the Hyde Park community area. Kenwood is notable for its many luxurious mansions, which were built for wealthy Chicagoans at the turn of the 20th century. To this day, a number of prominent Chicagoans still reside in Hyde Park. Barack Obama’s Chicago main residence is located on the corner of Greenwood and 51st Street.
The vast majority of the residential structures in Hyde Park are three-story
apartment buildings and single-family homes, with a few high-rise condos. However, the part of Hyde Park on the east side of the Metra Rail line (referred to as East Hyde Park), differs markedly from the rest of the neighborhood because it is abounding with high-rise condos, many of them facing the shining lakefront.
Hyde Park Single Family Homes For Sale
Hyde Park History
Hyde Park has a rich history, with roots going back to the 1800’s, when Paul Cornell purchased 300 acres of land between 51st and 55th streets along the shore of Lake Michigan near the Illinois Central Railroad. Cornell, a real estate speculator, was actually the cousin of Cornell University founder, Ezra Cornell. Paul’s idea was to attract other businessmen and their families to the land. At the time, it was a rural area that enjoyed the benefit of comfortable weather tempered by the lake, which made it cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Soon after, Hyde Park became a popular suburban retreat for affluent Chicagoans looking to escape the noise and congestion of the rapidly growing city.
Later in 1893, Hyde Park held the World’s Columbian Exposition, a world’s fair marking the 400thanniversary of Christopher Columbus’ arrival in the New World. The neighborhood quickly grew in fame after the Exposition, and soon after, an inflow of new residents spurred new development that transformed the neighborhood.
Today, Hyde Park is something like an urban oasis with an array of things to do! Museum Campus South, the heart of Hyde Park, houses a consortium of museums and cultural institutions for everyone to take advantage of and enjoy. The University of Chicago offers an array of activities, including summer programs for children in athletics and arts.
Some of the best spots to dine in Hyde Park are La Petite Folie, a French bistro on East 55th Street, Medici, a bakery and deli on 57th Street that carries gluten free pizza crust, and Ribs ’n’ Bibs, a BBQ counter on Dorchester that’s been in business since 1966.
Beyond dining, Hyde Park is a hot spot for street fairs and art exhibits in the summer. Every year Hyde Park hosts the 57th street art fair, which showcases some of the city’s finest art from artists all over the country. This year will be the 68th annual fair.
Hyde Park encapsulates everything wonderful about the city: culture, diversity and history. Make this neighborhood your home and schedule a tour today!
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