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Chicago’s best free rental service

Aerial view downtown

If you’re searching for an apartment in Chicago’s downtown, Lincoln Park and Lakeview neighborhoods, YoChicago is your best free rental service. We’re an objective, visually rich website with comprehensive apartment reviews, all-inclusive at-a-glance lists, neighborhood maps and guides, narrated video tours and a great deal more. If you like what you see here and know ...

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Posted by Joe Zekas on February 26, 2014
ChicagoSouth Side

Jackson Park Highlands, a historic model neighborhood

Jackson Park Highlands video | South Shore Chicago

In 1905, the Jackson Park Highlands neighborhood was commissioned as a model community featuring some of the most innovative concepts of the time – large front lawns, 50-foot wide lots, driveways instead of alleys, and underground utilities. Today, the area has undergone a renaissance and is a showcase of beautiful homes of various architectural styles. ...

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Posted by sponsored post on March 3, 2012
ChicagoNorth Side

From the vault: The skyline from Lincoln Park

Video: Chicago skyline, from Lincoln Park at Fullerton

There’s no surprise that Trump owned our YouTube traffic in April — he would have even if he hadn’t been in the news all month. One of the 10 most popular videos in April came as a surprise, though. Two summers ago, Joe and I shot this brief vignette of the city skyline and the ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on May 4, 2011
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

A big moving day for Chicago

Moving van in Wicker Park

May 1 marks the beginning of many new leases in Chicago, and it’s obvious from taking a quick walk around the neighborhood. I took 45 minutes to walk around the Wicker Park and Bucktown streets closest to my home, and I could find at least one moving van or trailer, and often more, on each ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on May 1, 2011
ChicagoSouth Side

How has the Plan for Transformation really changed the South and West sides?

80th & Wabash Ave block club sign

“Part of the problem is that these neighborhoods are changing anyway, so not all of the poor people moving in are from the C.H.A. I think it’s become a socially accepted way to say, ‘My neighborhood is changing and I don’t like it.’” There’s been a lot of discussion lately about the Plan for Transformation’s ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on April 29, 2011
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

From the vault: Good Friday in Pilsen

Video: Good Friday in Pilsen

Every Good Friday, thousands of Pilsen residents turn out for a Stations of the Cross procession down 18th Street. Last year I met the throng near 18th and Paulina, and followed it west to Harrison Park, where the parade culminated with a reenactment of the crucifixion.

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Posted by Joseph Askins on April 22, 2011

Name the nabe of the Humpty on the prairie

Name the nabe of the Humpty on the prairie

All the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t figure out where this egg-cellent effigy of Humpty Dumpty resides, but maybe you can. Be the first to name the neighborhood where this statue sits and win a YoChicago yo-yo.

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Posted by Joseph Askins on April 13, 2011

Historically black wards turning white

Ward population map

The Chicago Reader’s Ben Joravsky looked at Rob Paral’s new Census mashups and the results of the spring elections to see how Chicago’s 50 wards — and the people who represent them — are changing: As we all know, the city’s been systematically demolishing the high-rises for the last two decades. With the projects demolished, ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on April 7, 2011
ChicagoDowntown / Loop

From the vault: Saint Joseph’s Day in the Heart of Italy

Saint Joseph's Day in the Heart of Italy

St. Joseph has a special place in the real estate world — plant a statuette of the old carpenter outside a house (usually upside down, the tradition goes), and he’ll bring some good luck to your home sale. Joe Zekas was in the Heart of Italy four years ago today, and might not have known ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on March 19, 2011

Time Out asks, ‘Is Bridgeport the next Pilsen?’

Crossing Halsted in Bridgeport, Chicago

And they mean that in a good way. It’s been ages (three whole months!) since anyone asked, “What’s the next hot ‘hood?”, so naturally it’s time to find out, and Time Out Chicago is on the case. It’s not an open-ended question — you have just four choices, but at least you’re open to offer ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 23, 2011

Mapping population changes by ward

Population changes by ward, 2000 - 2010

Word is there’s some sort of election going on today, so it’s fitting that the latest mashup of Census data I’ve seen plots out population changes from 2000 to 2010 by ward. The map, created by Rob Paral and Associates, allows users to see total changes (shown in this image — green shows growing populations, ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 22, 2011

Tracking vacancies, tract by tract

Boarded-up home, 6000 block, S Artesian Ave

Megan Cottrell of Chicago Muckrakers shared a great cache of data with her readers this week: spreadsheets listing the number of commercial and residential vacancies not just in each community area, but in each of the city’s Census tracts, meaning you can almost determine “how many empty homes are sitting on your street,” she says. ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 17, 2011

Quote of the day: Where we’re going

Illinois population map

Aaron Renn of The Urbanophile digs into the new Census numbers at NewGeography.com: The non-Hispanic White Only population of the city actually declined by 52,449, or 5.78%. The “minority” population declined even further, -147,969 or 7.44%, meaning the city actually grew its white population share by 0.38 percentage points, perhaps indicating the early stages of ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 17, 2011

Census: City loses 200K, metro area gains 210K

Chicago’s population fell by more than 200,000 to 2,695,598 people over the course of the last decade, due in large part to an outflux of African-American residents, according to new Census data trickling out through Crain’s. At the same time, the population of the metropolitan area as a whole grew by about 210,000 people, with ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 15, 2011

Get Yo news by neighborhood

YoChicago neighborhood guides

One of the changes we made to YoChicago when we rolled out our redesign in November was the addition of a lot of content we had hosted previously at other sites. You can now find our neighborhood profiles under the “Guides” button in the navigation bar above. Most guides feature: A Google map outlining the ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 14, 2011
ChicagoNorthwest Side

Two histories of Albany Park

Video: Old School Albany Park, Chicago Latin Kings

By sheer coincidence I’ve received links to two wildly different depictions of old-school Albany Park in less than 12 hours. Between them, you can get a good sense of the changes that the neighborhood underwent over a 40-year period. Last night, Joe Zekas reminded me of above clip on Albany Park’s Latin Kings, taken from ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on February 4, 2011
News & trendsArchitecture & design

How would you improve Chicago’s boulevards?

Logan Square (May 2000).

Last year the Chicago Architectural Club challenged architects, artists, and other creative types to find a new use for the Spire hole in Streeterville. The winning idea was…a big yellow ball. The club isn’t holding a Chicago Prize competition for 2011, but it is co-sponsoring an international competition with MAS Studio to rethink the “Emerald ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on January 24, 2011
ChicagoWest / Southwest

A quick glance at Garfield Ridge

Despite seeing thousands of white and African-American residents leave, the Southwest Side neighborhood of Garfield Ridge actually grew in size by a modest 1.5% over the last decade, due to a doubling of its Hispanic population, according to the Census Bureau’s 2009 American Community Survey. The neighborhood is currently home to 20,323 white residents (55.5% ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on January 7, 2011
ChicagoSouth Side

City sending wrecking ball to South Shore’s ‘white elephant’

Video: Touring South Shore with Jeff Heilbrunn, Part 6 - High schools and heavyweights

Built for a then-hefty $9 million, South Shore High was planned to be “a pace-setter for the city,” according to a 1968 Tribune story. The architecturally Brutalist building (a style that was in vogue for educational and public intuitional buildings then) was designed with hexagonal classrooms, closed-circuit television that would beam-in instruction to the classrooms, ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on January 4, 2011
ChicagoSouth Side

Does South Chicago have a new gay enclave?

South Chicago, Chicago, Illinois

The New York Times map of American Community Survey data is already yielding some interesting examples of demographic clustering. The data says that 10 percent of the 375 households in census tract 4606, bounded by 87th and 89th streets and Muskegon and South Chicago avenues, are same-sex couples. Commenters in the past have told us ...

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Posted by Joseph Askins on December 15, 2010