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basille

Chicago, IL

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This is my first Chicago winter (I live in North Chicago). Everyone keeps telling me that it hasn't been bad (so far). I did invest in a really nice heavy coat before I came. One of my professors gave us a winter pep talk and emphasized not wearing your heaviest winter coat until it's really cold. It's the wind that makes life miserable. 

 

I will say I find myself less motivated to do these in the winter evenings, but I do think I've adjusted pretty well. If everyone else can do it, I can do it! 

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There is definitely less motivation to go outside, but the city itself is comparatively active in the winter. I see people running along the lake all year long, even with strollers and wind guards/fleece shields covering the babies. People still go out to parties, clubs, public transit it solid (even from Evanston down to the city). Winter doesn’t stop people, but you are more likely to choose destinations specifically and less likely to go on a pub crawl. It really is up to you. The city is still there in the winter with all it has to offer (it’s just inside instead of on the patio or in the park, etc).

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On 2/23/2018 at 10:42 AM, AllieKat said:

Hey, everyone! I'm a Southerner considering attending Northwestern (Evanston campus, but I'd like to live in North Chicago). Just wondering what life in the city is like in the winter. Do people just sort of hole up inside and try to bear it, or are there fun parts to the cold months?

There's plenty of fun to be had in the colder months, it's just a different set of activities than in the summer. Comedy, music, theater, and drinking never stop, and depending on your interests you can find some pretty wonderful winter-specific activities. Some more popular winter activities include things like skating in the park, the Christkindle Market (which is fun even if you don't really do the Christmas thing), Zoo Lights, TBOX (if you're into the Wrigleyville scene), etc. Many museums have free or discount days in the winter and the regular city life - music, comedy, theater, bars, great restaurants, nerdy meetups, midnight showings, etc. - is still thriving. There aren't as many street festivals as you'll find in the summer, but it's a great city year-round if you can take a little bit of a chill. 

If you're going to Northwestern and living in the city, you'll probably end up somewhere in Rogers Park, Edgewater, or Uptown. These are really fun parts of the city that have been growing and changing a considerable amount in recent years. That also puts you close to both Northwestern and Loyola, so there will be other grad students around looking to hang out and burn off some stress. Come join us - you're going to love it!

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I'll likely be attending U Chicago for my MPP (Harris) next fall. Assuming that I can incorporate Metra into my travels, how crazy is it to live in a north/northwestern neighborhood like Lakeview, Logan Square, or Wicker Park while studying at U Chicago? I'm coming to Chicago from NYC and I really found that Hyde Park really lacks the atmosphere I've become accustomed to over the past 6-7 years in NYC. Even Morningside Heights where I spent 4 years as an undergrad at Columbia feels more vibrant/urban than Hyde Park. 

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I will very likely be moving to Chicago to attend Northwestern and am trying to get a sense of the livability/commute from various neighborhoods. I know Rogers Park is a popular one (we even had current students take us on a walking tour), but I'm kinda eyeing places off the express Purple stops. As a queer Asian American I'm especially curious about the area around Belmont (due to its proximity to Boystown) and Wilson (due to its proximity to "New Chinatown"/Little Saigon). Is it likely to find a room to rent out (not a 1br or studio) in either of those areas for ~$700/mo, and does anyone have experience with/advice about the commute to NU from there during peak or off-peak hours? Also, any advice for places to look for rooms other than Craigslist and Facebook groups?

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On 3/9/2018 at 2:19 PM, Policy.Planner.NYC said:

I'll likely be attending U Chicago for my MPP (Harris) next fall. Assuming that I can incorporate Metra into my travels, how crazy is it to live in a north/northwestern neighborhood like Lakeview, Logan Square, or Wicker Park while studying at U Chicago? I'm coming to Chicago from NYC and I really found that Hyde Park really lacks the atmosphere I've become accustomed to over the past 6-7 years in NYC. Even Morningside Heights where I spent 4 years as an undergrad at Columbia feels more vibrant/urban than Hyde Park. 

I'm dealing with the same issue. I spent a summer in a program for UChicago and I loved it! But what I mostly loved was that I spent most of my time in Logan Square, Pilsen, Wicker Park, etc. instead of Hyde Park—which gets so boring. I'm mostly worried about commute (especially in the winters) if I choose to live further up. 

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On 3/12/2018 at 1:15 PM, deshypothequiez said:

I will very likely be moving to Chicago to attend Northwestern and am trying to get a sense of the livability/commute from various neighborhoods. I know Rogers Park is a popular one (we even had current students take us on a walking tour), but I'm kinda eyeing places off the express Purple stops. As a queer Asian American I'm especially curious about the area around Belmont (due to its proximity to Boystown) and Wilson (due to its proximity to "New Chinatown"/Little Saigon). Is it likely to find a room to rent out (not a 1br or studio) in either of those areas for ~$700/mo, and does anyone have experience with/advice about the commute to NU from there during peak or off-peak hours? Also, any advice for places to look for rooms other than Craigslist and Facebook groups?

As a queer man I enjoyed living in Edgewater, and found myself going out in Rogers Park and Andersonville much more than Boystown. In addition to being much more affordable than Boystown, any of the Far North neighborhoods also tend to be safer (with the exception of northern Rogers Park, near Howard). Apartment People ( https://www.apartmentpeople.com/) is a pretty convenient resource for finding housing. Just for comparison, I paid ~$950 for a 1BR in Edgewater, two blocks from the "gay beach" (Hollywood). Anywhere around Belmont runs at least $1200+ for a decent 1BR. Studios run about $100-200 cheaper in their respective neighborhoods.

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Commuting to HP for Uchicago is doable from the north side, but not ideal. Plan on it taking about 40 minutes to get down to HP on a Weekday in morning traffic from Lincoln Park. Closer to an hour if your driving down from 90/94. And an hour-hour and a half if busing/metra. And similar back. If you can make sure your driving during non traffic hour times that time can be cut in half or a third. If you want something in between check out Pilsen. its still on the south side so you won't deal with traffic but has more of an "urban feel". West loop is kinda the dining area and nicer bars, if you can afford it. 

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Hello friends,

I was recently admitted to DePaul University. The stipend they offer me is $18,700 for 9 months and I am just wondering how much of a struggle living on that will be? For reference I lived in NYC all my life so I have a general idea what it is like living in a big city. 

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19 minutes ago, Sparkybob said:

Hello friends,

I was recently admitted to DePaul University. The stipend they offer me is $18,700 for 9 months and I am just wondering how much of a struggle living on that will be? For reference I lived in NYC all my life so I have a general idea what it is like living in a big city. 

It should be very doable. You can find a bedroom in a 3 bed apartment for around ~$500 per month in Rogers Park, which is not too long of a commute from Lincoln Park. Also, since you’d be attending a university in the city proper, you’d be able to get a discounted pass for the L train system and CTA (called a U-Pass) that allows for unlimited rides for college students. Groceries wouldn’t be too bad either, I live in one of the most expensive cities in the country right now and can manage on $25 per week in groceries (just groceries - I budget another $30ish for eating out for myself each week) so Chicago should be around the same if not a little bit cheaper. Your money will run you a lot further in Chicago than it would in NYC, in my opinion. 

Edited by shiningorb

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11 minutes ago, shiningorb said:

It should be very doable. You can find a bedroom in a 3 bed apartment for around ~$500 per month in Rogers Park, which is not too long of a commute from Lincoln Park. Also, since you’d be attending a university in the city proper, you’d be able to get a discounted pass for the L train system and CTA (called a U-Pass) that allows for unlimited rides for college students. Groceries wouldn’t be too bad either, I live in one of the most expensive cities in the country right now and can manage on $25 per week in groceries (just groceries - I budget another $30ish for eating out for myself each week) so Chicago should be around the same if not a little bit cheaper. Your money will run you a lot further in Chicago than it would in NYC, in my opinion. 

Thanks for the advice!

Do you think it is possible to save money on such a stipend? 

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I have a stipend slight smaller than yours (18,000) and live in the northern part of the city. I've always been frugal, but I've been extra careful since starting my PhD with budgeting. I have been able to save money--one, because I set it in my budget and, two, because I don't feel the need to spend every cent in my monthly budget if at the end I have money left over. Next year I'm going to find a studio which will make my housing more expensive and I doubt I can save as much (if any), but it was a decision I had to make for my own happiness.

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26 minutes ago, emhafe said:

I have a stipend slight smaller than yours (18,000) and live in the northern part of the city. I've always been frugal, but I've been extra careful since starting my PhD with budgeting. I have been able to save money--one, because I set it in my budget and, two, because I don't feel the need to spend every cent in my monthly budget if at the end I have money left over. Next year I'm going to find a studio which will make my housing more expensive and I doubt I can save as much (if any), but it was a decision I had to make for my own happiness.

That is good to hear! Did you have any problems commuting to your school?

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Since this is my first year in Chicago, I opted to live close to campus until I had a better understanding of the city. So, I walk a couple blocks over! I've been quite spoiled this year by that. 

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On 3/9/2018 at 1:19 PM, Policy.Planner.NYC said:

I'll likely be attending U Chicago for my MPP (Harris) next fall. Assuming that I can incorporate Metra into my travels, how crazy is it to live in a north/northwestern neighborhood like Lakeview, Logan Square, or Wicker Park while studying at U Chicago? I'm coming to Chicago from NYC and I really found that Hyde Park really lacks the atmosphere I've become accustomed to over the past 6-7 years in NYC. Even Morningside Heights where I spent 4 years as an undergrad at Columbia feels more vibrant/urban than Hyde Park. 

As someone who lived in Logan square and dated someone who lives in Hyde park, honestly it was pretty exhausting. The metra is more expensive and I don't believe it is covered by the UPass. I live in Hyde Park now and I think it gets a bad reputation for being not very exciting. The university is always having events and so is the Promotory, the revival theater, the bookstores and the Hyde Park art center. There is lots of stuff to do it just takes some investigating. It also isn't too difficult to get downtown if you live near the bus or train. I live close to the buses that take you to campus and downtown and my apartment is pretty inexpensive! 

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What's the parking situation like at University of Chicago? I'll be commuting from Logan Square (near the Western station) and I haven't quite decided if I should use public transportation or drive down.

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On 4/11/2018 at 12:18 PM, shmcewen said:

What's the parking situation like at University of Chicago? I'll be commuting from Logan Square (near the Western station) and I haven't quite decided if I should use public transportation or drive down.

Basically same here except commuting from the suburbs- I heard parking on campus is really tough; I don't mind paying a bit but I'd much rather just have an easy space and walk a few minutes than worry about finding a spot after making the drive over. Any suggestions?

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I'll be joining UIC this upcoming Fall. Can anyone help me with the Housing??? I am ready to commute 30-45 mins from my housing also. Can someone please help me with it with the rent details if possible. Any help is much much appreciated. 

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Hi, I am an international student and I will be attending UChicago, so I am trying to figure out the housing situation from abroad. Would it be a bad idea to sublet a room which is available for the fall quarter and then look for a place to sign a longer lease? This has the advantage of actually being able to see the place in person and having a better idea of the exact area I want to live at. Will it be much harder to find a good deal for a room/studio starting from January?

Thanks

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On 6/8/2018 at 2:12 PM, christinaelena said:

Hi, I am an international student and I will be attending UChicago, so I am trying to figure out the housing situation from abroad. Would it be a bad idea to sublet a room which is available for the fall quarter and then look for a place to sign a longer lease? This has the advantage of actually being able to see the place in person and having a better idea of the exact area I want to live at. Will it be much harder to find a good deal for a room/studio starting from January?

Thanks

Yeah, I definitely recommend moving into a place that you're able to see in person first. If you're coming from out of the country, I can see how it might be easier to sublet for a bit to give yourself more time to look at longer-term options. If you're hoping to sign a lease starting in January, you may find that your options are somewhat limited, since that's not a super popular period for leases to start/end. Of course, the flip side is that you may be able to get a lower rate, since landlords will be eager to fill those units. But also, keep in mind that moving in Chicago in the middle of winter would be...a (cold, wet) challenge.

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On 7/2/2018 at 2:53 AM, ayeshakhan said:

What should be my expenses for a month on an average?

Depends on neighborhood and lifestyle, but Chicago as a whole is expensive. I lived in a studio on the far north side and probably spent about $950 on rent and utilities; I would recommend finding roommates to lower your housing costs. Monthly Ventra pass (for CTA access) is $105. I aimed to spend $80-90/month on food, which meant I ate a lot of rice and beans and almost never went out. 

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On 7/6/2018 at 11:32 AM, slouching said:

Depends on neighborhood and lifestyle, but Chicago as a whole is expensive. I lived in a studio on the far north side and probably spent about $950 on rent and utilities; I would recommend finding roommates to lower your housing costs. Monthly Ventra pass (for CTA access) is $105. I aimed to spend $80-90/month on food, which meant I ate a lot of rice and beans and almost never went out. 

Alright, thank you. So, I would say that if I manage to find a roommate, my monthly expense should be about $700 right?

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