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Category Archives: Chicago info and stuff

Famous Fido No Kill Shelter

Home.

       At Holiday time, we get misty-eyed about the concept ofHome.  Although everything may not work out so great in reality, we still are very aware of how it should be.  Every family member should have a sense of belonging.  Should feel warm, well-fed, relaxed and protected.  Should feel true joy and true love.  These satisfying feelings should waft through the Home along with the wonderful smells from the  emanating from the kitchen.


Goblin, shown drifting off to sleep above, is now experiencing all the comforts of 
Home.  His adopter was totally charmed by his long lean body and his bad-boy attitude.  His holiday season will be spectacular.  Adorable poodle Hooty, shown below  leaving  Famous Fido for his new Forever Home,
 lucked out in time for Thanksgiving.


But sometimes 
Home is not possible in the traditional sense.  Your chosen family might be a group of friends instead.  But that is Home because there is love and the group has created its own traditions.  In the same way, cats and dogs who have special needs or who are terminally ill, may not have high adoption potential.  But it is possible that they still have a true Home.  At Famous Fido, we make every effort to provide that Home environment in our sanctuary for those in hospice care.  Hogan and Sheena, shown below, did not make it to this Thanksgiving.  But while they lived they were loved and had good medical care and warm cozy quarters with lots of room to move about and enjoy toys and cat towers or doggie beds  and their favorite foods.  They knew they were Home and protected.


To provide for this 9,000 SF sanctuary and for high-cost veterinary care, Famous Fido depends on the generous support of our donors.  Please help us continue our efforts.  Support us by clicking on the DONATE NOW button and remember us on Giving Tuesday, November 28th

Give the Gift of Love and Compassion.  Adopt!

Chicago’s Most Iconic Buildings

Chicago Skyline

Chicago has some amazing examples of  truly wonderful architecture! And the building never seems to stop!  There are currently 33 cranes in Chicago working on new projects!

 

The buildings and architecture of Chicago have influenced and reflected the history of American architecture. The built [constructed] environment of Chicago is reflective of the city’s history and multicultural heritage, featuring prominent buildings in a variety of styles by many important architects. Since most structures within the downtown area were destroyed by the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 (the most famous exception being the Water Tower) Chicago buildings are noted for their originality rather than their antiquity.

Chicago is world-famous for its plethora of unique architectural styles, from Chicago Bungalows and Two-Flats to the grand Graystones along Logan Boulevard and Lawndale, from the skyscrapers of the Loop as well as a wealth of sacred architecture such as the city’s ornate “Polish Cathedrals”.

CURBED recently compiled a list of 27  that everyone in Chicago should know about.

Credited for inventing the skyscraper, Chicago and its lasting mark in the world of architecture is internationally renown. The city has an abundance of remarkable structures and no shortage of residents and tourists eager to learn their histories.

Think about…what top 5 come to mind???

 

Building a New Uptown Chicago – A Renaissance!

Uptown Theater
816 North Broadway

From Cinema Treasures: One of the last great movie palaces in Chicago, this fabulous theater built in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago was built in 1925 and was the destination for moviegoers until the theater closed in 1981.

Changing times and the shift in population have not helped the Uptown. Or the Uptown neighborhoods,  but that seems to all be changing!  Millions of dollars  are coming to Uptown for big improvements and expansion!

 

FINALLY   a new and improved Wilson stop!

The $203 million Wilson Station Reconstruction Project reached another major milestone on October 23, 2017 with the completion of construction work on the main stationhouse.

Located in the Uptown neighborhood, the wheelchair accessible Wilson station now offers:

  • Seamless transfers between Red Line and Purple Line Express service for the first time
  • A second new platform, providing riders dedicated platforms for boarding and alighting northbound and southbound trains
  • A new second station entrance located on the north side of Wilson Avenue
  • Stunning, Art Deco inspired artwork created especially for the main stationhouse by world-renowned artist Cecil Balmond.

 

  •  One-of-a-kind artwork
    Suspended from the ceiling of the new main entrance is the stunning new multi-faceted sculpture “Arpeggio”, which was created especially for the Wilson station by world-renowned artist, designer and engineer Cecil Balmond.

Over the next several weeks, crews will continue to be on-site completing work the auxiliary entrance at Sunnyside Ave., as well as restoration of the former 1923 stationhouse façade and clock tower (at the northwest corner of Wilson/Broadway) to make it a viable commercial/retail space, thus creating an anchor for revitalization and economic development in the Uptown neighborhood.

HOPEFULLY,  the  Wilson  UnderLine will become a reality…

Imagine an entirely new Uptown public space. A space that reclaims the once forgotten landscape below the Wilson ‘L’ tracks and transforms an ordinary parking lot and station entrance into a vibrant, safe, lively and welcoming public amenity. Imagine a space that can bring people together, provide public programming, seating, food truck dining and creative public art.

The WILSON UNDERLINE seeks to provide the newly renovated CTA Wilson Station with a dynamic public space dedicated to the Uptown neighborhood by providing opportunities for collaborative community programming and creative public engagement; a space that draws the community together and enriches the Wilson Station project from the ground up.

The WILSON UNDERLINE draws inspiration from efforts such as NYC’s High LineChicago’s 606 and the Low-Line Vision in neighboring Lakeview – to reimagine how transit infrastructure might be creatively utilized on a day to day basis by the local community.

Property values are on the rise in Uptown!

HOMES – As of Summer 2017, The median sales price for homes in Uptown for May 24 to Aug 23 was $248,500 based on 148 home sales.

RENT – The median rent per month for apartments in Uptown for Jul 24 to Aug 24, 2017 was $1,425. You can find a Studio  for  about  $850-$1000.  One bedrooms  run on average  $1100-1400. And  two bedrooms  $1400+

CRIME – Uptown has average crime relative to the rest of Cook County.

Knowing more about crime activity in and around Uptown can help keep you aware of crime in the area. Crime activity is most helpful when comparing two locations to understand the relative safety of each location. * Use  WALK SCORE  to see the crime  numbers  for  a  specific  address or street.

A new and exciting lakefront high-rise was cleared this summer and has started climbing towards its 27-story final height. Known as Eight Eleven Uptown, the development landed a full, $45 million construction permit yesterday. In the works for many years to replace the 3.4-acre vacant site of the old Cuneo Hospital—later home to Maryville Academy—at the corner of Montrose and Clarendon, the project received its first foundation permit back in February of this year.

Eight Eleven Uptown is being developed by JDL and was drawn up by the designers at Chicago-based Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture (HPA). When complete, the mixed-use high-rise complex will contain 373 luxury rental apartments, nearly 30,000 square feet of ground floor retail space (rumored to be anchored by a new grocery store), and parking for 278 vehicles. More new residents moving to Uptown is a great thing!

STEWART School Lofts

in another cool project in the neighborhood that will be completed Spring 2018. Located across from Target on Broadway and Sunnyside. One of Chicago’s most beautiful historic buildings, the Graeme Stewart Elementary School was named after prominent Chicagoan businessman Graeme Stewart, an important figurehead in Chicago at the turn-of-the-century. The school was home to students for more than 100 years, before closing in 2013 due to enrollment declines.

Morningside Group, a builder, developer, and property manager, purchased the school in early 2016 through the Chicago Public School’s Building Repurposing and Sale Program, with plans to revitalize the school to its former splendor and convert the interior space into modern apartments with historic details. Apartment move-ins are expected to commence in early 2018.

What is a Convertible Apartment?

A “convertible” is the same as a “junior one bedroom” – it’s a small condo/apartment, generally a little larger than the studio’s 400-550 s/f, with some means of separating one area from the rest of the space to create a more private sleeping space.

Many are “L” shaped, and anything from a free-standing screen to a curtain to a moveable wall may be used to separate the sleeping space from the living area. Neither a convertible nor a junior one bedroom has an actual separate bedroom with a door, usually, and they should be marked as having 0 bedrooms in the MLS or listing.

 

In Uptown,  on Lakeside  off Clarendon, is a great gut rehab project being built  with  80 units.  Convertibles come with Stainless Steel kitchen with dishwasher and microwave, Granite counters,  Hardwood throughout,  Modern bathroom,  A/C Wall-Unit,  Laundry in unit!!!  And  Large closet space! Cats are  welcome too! They are priced at $1150!

 

This is a great deal!

More pics  available.

Let me know if you are interested in seeing one of the units!

 

MICHAEL “LOVE” SNELL
 APARTMENT LEASING AGENT    CELL: 773.206.8359


LOVE YOUR SPACE!

 

News, tips, etc www.MichaelLoveChicago.com
EXPLORE LISTINGS HERE http://102040.speedhatch.com
 

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111 Places in Chicago not to Miss

When ever I travel anywhere,  I see a  few of the big tourist  things  but then  I ask  around, talk to locals,  about  what they like  to do.  So I love books like this!

111 Places in Chicago That You Must Not Miss (111 Places in …. That You Must Not Miss)

    • The ultimate insider’s guide to Chicago, fully illustrated with 111 full-page color photographs!

Features interesting and unusual places not found in traditional travel guides!

This book is great  for locals and tourists!

Chicago. City of the Big Shoulders. What started off as a small fur-trading settlement is today a bustling metropolis. Once considered the “hog butcher of the world, stacker of wheat, player with railroads and the nation’s freight handler”, Chicago’s colorful past remains hidden in the nooks and crannies of this wonderful windy city.

Adventures await, from the glamorous to the gritty. Sip dirty martinis in an elegant, underground, 1920’s bank vault. Paddle a kayak down the infamous Bubbly Creek of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. While away an afternoon in a salt cave, or smoke a classic cigar in the oldest family-run tobacco shop in the U.S. Snorkel a 32-acre, limestone sheet shoal, one of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the Midwest. Dine outdoors in a 23rd floor Beaux-Arts cupola overlooking the Chicago River.

Whether you’re an out-of-towner or a diehard Chicago dweller who thinks you’ve seen it all, these 111 hidden places are waiting for you to discover them.

Author: Amy Bizzarri

Amy Bizzarri is a freelance writer specializing in family fun and travel, a Chicago public schools world language teacher, and an avid reader. She lives with her two kids – a tween boy and a toddler girl – in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago. Follow Amy and her adventures in Chicago and beyond on her personal blog, AmyWrites312.com.

Hyde Park – Europe Meets Modern

When I first moved to Chicago I visited the Museum of Science and Industry  one day and took a walk around the University of Chicago campus. It looked and felt like I was somewhere in Europe! (Probably because it was founded  in  1890!)

From the first campus plan to the most recent contemporary tower, the architecture at the University of Chicago has been conceived by some of the most forward-thinking and well-respected designers in the world. Campus features the work of architects such as Frank Lloyd WrightHenry Ives CobbEero SaarinenLudwig Mies van der RoheWalter NetschRicardo LegorretaRafael ViñolyCésar PelliHelmut JahnTod Williams and Billie Tsien Architects, and Holabird, Root and Burgee

Hyde Park is a neighborhood and community area on the South Side of Chicago. It is located on the shore of Lake Michigan seven miles (11 km) south of the Chicago Loop.

Hyde Park’s official boundaries are 51st Street/Hyde Park Boulevard on the north, the Midway Plaisance (between 59th and 60th streets) on the south, Washington Park on the west, and Lake Michigan on the east. According to another definition, a section to the north between 47th Street and 51st Street/Hyde Park Boulevard is also included as part of Hyde Park, although this area is officially the southern part of the Kenwood community area. The area encompassing Hyde Park and the southern part of Kenwood is sometimes referred to as Hyde Park-Kenwood.

Hyde Park hosts the University of Chicago, the Museum of Science and Industry, and two of Chicago’s four historic sites listed in the original 1966 National Register of Historic Places (Chicago Pile-1, the world’s first artificial nuclear reactor, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s  Robie House). In the early 21st century, Hyde Park received national attention for its association with U.S. President Barack Obama.

Within Hyde Park’s mile-square boundary thrives an astonishingly rich and diverse cultural landscape. From museums to music, art to architecture, Hyde Park has it all. In addition to sponsoring a vast array of cultural events, myriad community and university organizations offer opportunities to participate in the arts as well.

From fast food to haute cuisine, Hyde Park packs an eclectic variety of restaurants into its small area.

Ethnic choices abound—Italian, Thai, Mediterranean, Chinese, Cajun, and Caribbean are just a few of the options. The Global Cuisine sensation Chant, for example, recently landed on Chicago Magazine’s list of hot restaurants. Other great choices include Piccolo MondoCedars Mediterranean Kitchen, Mellow YellowNoodles Etc.The Sit Down, Rajun Cajun and Shinju Sushi. For pizza and more, there are Giordano’s, Pizza Capri, and the perennial student favorite, Medici on 57th.

Hyde Park escaped the devastation of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, so the neighborhood boasts some of the oldest houses in the city. Of course, there’s plenty of brand-new building going on, too, and a special focus on luxe condo conversions.

Housing options in Hyde Park range from large single-family homes to townhouses, high-rise condominiums, three- and four-story walk-up co-ops, and rental apartments. Montgomery Place  offers seniors a continuing-care retirement community.

As of Nov. 2017,  Studio’s  were running  $800-$900,  1  bedrooms  $1000-$1400,  2  bedrooms  $1300-$1900,  on  average.  

Wicker Park and Logan Square – TOP NEIGHBORHOODS in Nation

(A mural at 1653 W. North Avenue in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Read more about the mural HERE.)

The two Chicago neighborhoods earned high marks in walkability, transportation, and affordability!

Source Chicago Curbed:

Two Chicago ‘hoods—Wicker Park and Logan Square—were recently singled-out in a list of the nation’s 25 coolest neighborhoods. Published by HotSpot Rentals, the rundown considered factors such as transit, affordability, restaurants, and weather while drawing its information from popular websites Yelp, Trip Advisor, TimeOut, Walk Score, and Apartment List.

Wicker Park and Logan Square respectively ranked 22nd and 19th and scored well with regards to walkability, transportation, and budget. Both Chicago neighborhoods suffered when it came to weather and came up on the lower end of the spectrum of entertainment offerings.

The Wicker Park/Bucktown Chamber of Commerce says, “We work to build a healthy marketplace and to improve the quality of life in the Wicker Park and Bucktown neighborhoods through entrepreneurial development and commercial success. The Chamber manages the WPB Special Service Area, produces annual summer festivalsand helps coordinate neighborhood fundraisers throughout the year.

Wicker Park is a neighborhood of about 26,000 residents within the West Town community area in Chicago, Illinois. Situated just west of the Kennedy Expressway, Wicker Park is known for its local hipster culture, art community, nightlife, and food scene.

Logan Square is an official community area, historical neighborhood, and public square located on the northwest side of the City of Chicago. The Logan Square community area is one of the 77 city-designated community areas established for planning purposes. The Logan Square neighborhood, located within the Logan Square community area, is centered on the public square that serves as its namesake, located at the three-way intersection of Milwaukee Avenue, Logan Boulevard and Kedzie Boulevard.

The community area of Logan Square is, in general, bounded by the Metra/Milwaukee District North Line railroad on the west, the North Branch of the Chicago River on the east, Diversey Parkway, on the north, and Bloomingdale Avenue on the south. The area is characterized by the prominent historical boulevards, stately greystones and large bungalow-style homes.

 

Learn more about the various neighborhoods  at  CHOOSE CHICAGO!

Cost of Living in Chicago

I often tell visitors to Chicago, go up to the 96th floor of the Hancock on Michigan Avenue or take in a summer night on the rooftop of the London Hotel.  It is the BEST VIEWS, but you have pay $17 for a cocktail. Nothing is free. But you get a cocktail AND  a view. You don’t get that at the Willis Tower Skydeck or the Observatory of the Hancock.

I moved here from the Detroit suburbs. So Chicago was not “sticker shock”. Sure you pay a little more,  but look at ALL THAT GET! Nothing is free.

Chicago: The Windy City. Famous for its architecture and its deep-dish pizza, Chicago has a lot to offer. The third-largest city in the US is known as a city of neighborhoods. But before you make a move to the “Jewel of the Midwest” you should understand the true cost of living in Chicago. We’ve got you covered with our guide to the ins and outs of paying for life in America’s “Second City.”

Renting Costs in Chicago

Chicago may rival New York in terms of architectural splendor but the Windy City falls behind when it comes to rent prices. And that’s a good thing for the cost of living in Chicago.

According to myapartmentmap.com, the average rent for a Chicago apartment stands at $1,078 for a studio and $1,341 for a one-bedroom place. Upgrade to a two-bedroom and you can expect to pay around $1,744. A three-bedroom will run you $2,158.

These aren’t exactly bargains, but they’re well below the prices in New York. Take a look at how Chicago rental prices compare to the rest of America’s 10 largest cities.

Utilities

Whether you rent or buy you’ll have to pay utilities. According to numbeo.com, a basic utilities package of electricity, heating, water and garbage costs $121.16 in Chicago. If you add internet you’ll pay around $40.14. That’s below the national average of $47.83 and cheaper than internet in the rest of the country’s 10 largest cities.

Chicago Transportation Costs

Chicagoans who don’t have cars rely on a combination of bus and subway service. An unlimited monthly pass from the Chicago Transit Authority costs $100. That’s on par with LA and $16.50 less than in New York.

If you decide you can’t get by without a car you’ll have to pay for one of Chicago’s City Vehicle Stickers. This annual expense ensures your compliance with the city’s Wheel Tax. For a regular-sized passenger car the sticker will cost you $85.97.  GAS PRICES might make you faint!  30% above the national average!  Thanks to ALL OF THE TAXES!

Taxes

What about taxes? Groceries in Chicago are subject to a 2.25% sales tax on food. That’s rare in the US. Then there’s the restaurant tax to worry about.  And sales tax in Cook County is  10.25%.

Plus, Illinois has the second-highest property taxes in the nation. The statewide average effective property tax rate is 2.13%. That’s almost twice the national average. When it comes to income taxes, Chicago keeps things simple, though. Illinois has a flat income tax of 5%.

Entertainment

Chicago isn’t lacking in entertainment options.  This does not make the city more expensive. Maybe it’s your lifestyle. You can live in Indiana cheap and have NOTHING to do.  OR live in Chicago.

Bottom Line

Chicago has plenty of free attractions to recommend it. How about a walk along the shore of Lake Michigan, a picnic in Millennium Park or a visit to the Lincoln Park Zoo? When you get tired you can check out the campus of the University of Chicago or take a stroll through Wicker Park. Just make sure you bring a warm coat if you visit in winter. Although the origin of the nickname “Windy City” has nothing to do with the weather, Chicago is in fact a windy city.

READ MORE at  SMART  ASSET

Renters Rights in Chicago Illinois

According to the city of Chicago’s website, more than 60 percent of the city’s residents are renters. Just as certain responsibilities are required of them, they are also afforded certain rights under Illinois and Chicago laws and can hold landlords and building/unit owners responsible for their duties. Chicago renters’ rights and responsibilities are subject to national, Illinois state and city laws.

In Chicago, the Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordinance (CRLTO) governs the relationship between the two parties, a summary of which must be attached to every lease to which it applies signed within the city. (The ordinance does not cover hotels, school dorms or units in owner-occupied buildings with six or fewer units, though it does cover oral agreements.)

The CRLTO states that tenants must buy and install batteries to keep smoke detectors working properly, keep the unit safe and clean and avoid disturbing other residents. A resident must also allow a landlord access to a unit after two days’ notice.

The attorney general’s office also says that tenants must pay rent on time, keep the unit “clean and undamaged” (and pay for any damages beyond “normal wear and tear” for which a tenant is responsible) and give a written 30-day notice if you intend to leave at the end of your lease in order to get your security deposit back.

Chicago landlords also have responsibilities according to the CRLTO and the Illinois Attorney General’s office, which first includes keeping the unit fit to live in. They must also make necessary repairs to buildings and units in compliance with health codes and cannot cut off access to water, heat or electricity.\

See more  at Huffington Post By Reboot Illinois

MICHAEL “LOVE”  SNELL,   LEASING AGENT

LOVE YOUR SPACE!

EXPLORE LISTINGS HERE http://102040.speedhatch.com

 

3223 N SHEFFIELD AVENUE, CHICAGO, IL 60657
CELL: 773.206.8359 | OFFICE: 773.525.6570
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Best Pizza in Chicago? Deep Dish or Stuffed?

Chicago-style pizza refers to several different styles of pizza developed in Chicago. Arguably, the most famous of these is known as deep-dish pizza. The pan in which it is baked gives the pizza its characteristically high edge and a deep surface for large amounts of cheese and a chunky tomato sauce. Chicago-style pizza may be prepared in deep-dish style and as a stuffed pizza.

According to Tim Samuelson, Chicago’s official cultural historian,there is not enough documentation to determine with certainty who invented Chicago-style deep-dish pizza. It is often reported that Chicago-style deep-dish pizza was invented at Pizzeria Uno in Chicago, in 1943, by Uno’s founder Ike Sewell, a former University of Texas football star. However, a 1956 article from the Chicago Daily News asserts that Uno’s original pizza chef Rudy Malnati developed the recipe.

Deep-dish pizza is baked in a round, steel pan that is more similar to a cake or pie pan than a typical pizza pan. The pan is oiled in order to allow for easy removal as well as to create a fried effect on the outside of the crust. The dough is pressed up onto the sides of the pan, forming a bowl for a very thick layer of toppings.

The thick layer of toppings used in deep-dish pizza requires a longer baking time, which could burn cheese or other toppings if they were used as the top layer of the pizza. Because of this, the toppings are assembled “upside-down” from their usual order on a pizza. The crust is covered with cheese (generally sliced mozzarella), followed by various meat options such as pepperoni or sausage, the latter of which is sometimes in a solid patty-like layer.

 

STUFFED PIZZA – By the mid-1970s, two Chicago chains, Nancy’s Pizza, founded by Rocco Palese, and Giordano’s Pizzeria, operated by brothers Efren and Joseph Boglio, began experimenting with deep-dish pizza and created the stuffed pizza. Palese based his creation on his mother’s recipe for scarciedda, an Italian Easter pie from his hometown of Potenza.Chicago Magazine articles featuring Nancy’s Pizza and Giordano’s stuffed pizza popularized the dish.

Stuffed pizzas are often even deeper than deep-dish pizzas, but otherwise, it can be hard to see the difference until it is cut into. A stuffed pizza generally has much deeper topping density than any other type of pizza. As with deep-dish pizza, a deep layer of dough forms a bowl in a high-sided pan and the toppings and cheese are added. Then, an additional layer of dough goes on top and is pressed to the sides of the crust.
At this stage, the thin dough top has a rounded, domed appearance. Pizza makers often poke a small hole in the top of the “lid” to allow air and steam to escape while cooking, so that the pizza does not explode. Usually, but not always, tomato sauce is ladled over the top crust before the pizza is baked.

SO, WHO HAS THE BEST PIZZA? Depends on who you ask! Taste is very subjective. Not everyone likes the same thing.

Trip Advisor lists the top 10 popular pizza’s here

 

3 that are sometimes overlooked, but I REALLY LIKE…

Art of Pizza Voted #1 Deep Dish Pizza by the Chicago Tribune!

Peaquods  25 years in Chicago, many critics  love this pizza!

Gullivers.  Established in 1965 featuring the North Side’s original pan pizza. This Rogers Park area restaurant is chocked full of all kinds of  antiques and Tiffany  lamps. Must See!