"A jungle of crumbling tenements"

It is a jungle of crumbling tenements, twisted shacks and filthy alleys. It is an open jail for men who are guilty of no greater crime than being poor, or not getting along with their wives, or just being lonesome.

– William J. Slocum’s description of Chicago’s old Skid Row, known today as the West Loop, published in Collier’s in 1949 and quoted in David Witter’s new article “Bummed Out,” published in this week’s NewCity. (Hat tip to Gapers Block for the link.)

What a great way to lead into a market snapshot for the West Loop, huh?. Currently in the West Loop’s two ZIP codes, 60607 and 60661 (which also cover parts of the Loop, South Loop, and Fulton River District), you can find homes for sale in the following styles and price ranges:

  • Six studios listed from the $50s to $190s; median price of $114,000
  • 213 one-bedrooms listed from the $70s to $370s; median price of $244,000
  • 253 two-bedrooms listed from the $140s to $1.34 million; median price of $335,000
  • 120 three-plus-bedrooms listed from the $230s to $1.75 million; median price of $550,000

For the sake of comparison, here are the median sale prices for units in 60607 and 60661 that have closed since mid-February:

  • Studios: $164,500
  • One-bedrooms: $239,000
  • Two-bedrooms: $340,000
  • Three-plus-bedrooms: $400,000

Condos listed for rent in 60607 and 60661 include the following:

  • Three studios listed from $695 to $700; median price of $695
  • 41 one-bedrooms listed from $700 to $3,000; median price of $1,500
  • 59 two-bedrooms listed from $1,600 to $3,200; median price of $2,000
  • 27 three-plus bedrooms listed from $1,250 to $7,500; median price of $2,800