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basille

Chicago, IL

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Would anyone recommend a neighborhood between UChicago and UIC?

Are you going to have a car or are you trying to take mass transit? Bridgeport is nice but its a bit off a convenient train line. Getting a place somewhere in the loop would be a better option for transit, but also more expensive

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Are you going to have a car or are you trying to take mass transit? Bridgeport is nice but its a bit off a convenient train line. Getting a place somewhere in the loop would be a better option for transit, but also more expensive

Thanks. I was hoping to rely on transit, but driving is also an option. Is driving between Bridgeport/UChicago/UIC any more painful than to be expected for city driving?

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Thanks. I was hoping to rely on transit, but driving is also an option. Is driving between Bridgeport/UChicago/UIC any more painful than to be expected for city driving?

Its really not too bad, for city driving. Obviously rush hour times are going to be worse. Parking near UIC is difficult or expensive, but you can usually find street parking down by Uchicago for free if you know where to look. Bridgeport is right in between the two campuses, and its about 15 minutes drive away from each. You can also get to UIC by taking the Halsted bus north (which would take you about a half hour) from there.

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- I'm entering grad school after a career as a professional modern dancer. I know Chicago has a great dance scene (one of the reasons I'm seriously considering UChicago), but if anyone has any insights about the best places to take class (professional level....not "adult" recreational) in either modern/contemporary and/or ballet, I'd be much obliged. :)

Try Giordano dance studio: http://www.gusgiordanodanceschool.com/gusgiordanodanceschool/Home.html

Also, in response to UIC posters, I may be accepting an offer to UIC. Right now I live in Evanston. I'm thinking of maybe living in Logan Square? That area seems affordable. And I think as long as the apartment is near the blue line stop it's relatively safe?

Finally, in response to UChicago safety: my boyfriend spent a year there. I don't think he ever had personal problems, but someone stole his car. I have another female friend who attends the medical school, and she said she doesn't go outside at night if she can help it (don't know if she's exaggerating). I think if you are in the limits of police coverage you're okay, but outside that invisible line it really is not safe.

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I've only been there for six months, and haven't experienced a summer yet, but it feels like some parts of Hyde Park are safer than others. I live off of east 55th St. almost to the lake, and I'm perfectly comfortable out walking at night in that area (within reason, obviously -- common sense says to avoid the parks after dark, etc.). It also feels less isolated than the western parts of HP because the 6 and X28 buses to the Loop are a block away along Hyde Park Blvd. I've felt uncomfortable walking on some of the less well lit side streets farther west in the neighborhood. I haven't heard of anyone's car being stolen or broken into, but it's good to be aware of. I don't know, I know that a lot of people get down on Hyde Park and there are some drawbacks, but it's a charming neighborhood in my experience.

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Hi everyone-

I just wanted some more information before I made my final decision. I'm deciding between BU and UIC's unfunded MA programs. I went to the BU open house and LOVED it... but UIC is higher ranked, cheaper, and not in its first year of the terminal masters. Recent graduates have gotten into top 20 Ph.D programs.

Before I give them my decision, I thought I'd ask everyone on the forums if they know anyone who has been through the UIC MA program. Any personal experiences with the English department in general? The graduate coordinator is not giving me as much information as I need. In fact, the department seems much less friendly than BU. How much does that matter, if at all? Anything at all would be helpful; I don't want to make the wrong choice!

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I'm sure there's already a thread about Chicago, but basically I'm looking for a neighborhood that is close to Rush University and with little risk of getting in the cross-fire of gang shooting, or getting mugged :unsure:. The stories about the recent shootings really scared me. However, I also hated driving in Chicago when I went to visit, so preferably a neighborhood that isn't too far by train. Is there anything that fits the bill?

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@Purpledinosaur and @Dorinda and anyone considering UChicago

I had the lovely experience of being at Uchicago the last academic year. It is a tremendously beautiful place academically. It ends there. I lived a block away from campus in student housing.

I had my apartment complex broken into twice

2 people shot and killed within a block and a half of me...within a week. (Gang related, no students hurt)

My license plate almost ripped off across the street from campus

My car keyed...3 times

My car broken into (nothing to steal in it...haha bitches)

Although the university hires the second largest private police force in the country, I would submit that they are largely inept. The one and only time I used a police car drive-along to escort me, I was literally ditched by the officer after she followed me for all of 2 blocks, had to call HQ, and filed a formal complaint (I am not the type) and the officer was disciplined for potentially compromising student safety.

On the notion of random crime, kids are held up at gun point occasionally, stuff goes missing on campus often, break-ins are common, and girls get fondled at night. And sometimes in the day. As a girl, I did have a few close calls. Walking as a group doesn't help, even groups get attacked sometimes with random violence. Last year there was a group of like 5 students who were attacked and a few went to the hospital.

The school does everything it can to protect students, and there is a very convenient shuttle system that makes it so that the majority of kids don't have to walk after 4 pm. Those routes are set and come often. There is also a point-to-point shuttle system that operates. It was the subject of a shitload of ire last year and a bunch of people formally complained to the university with stories that they would call the shuttle, and 45 minutes later the shuttle would roll up. Or not show up at all. If you're super interested, google "uchicago safe ride".

There is a good grocery store with great produce (hyde park produce), and a lot of relatively shitty restaurants that charge about 20% more than they should. The food on campus is OK.

I was only there for a year so I was happy to make the most of it. The crime and stuff is more an inconvenience than a a serious threat to safety because its basically people wanting money, and the intellectual environment is so luxurious and stunning, it made it worth it for me. Visit it, check it out, and see if you think it will be worth it for you.

Wow! That is some list of grievances.......Too late for me, I have already accepted.

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If anyone is looking for a sublet in Chicago this summer, please DM me for details. I'm leaving for field research this summer and have a 2 bedroom apartment off the red line (Morse) in Rogers park. It's perfect for Loyola, Northwestern and DePaul students. It's available anytime from mid-June to mid-September, but I'd prefer a 2-month or longer sublet...

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I've found a few really promising places in Hyde Park. I'm aware of what a pain in the ass it can be to get in and out of the area via public transit, but what about crime?

I saw some earlier posts about the area, but are there specific streets and places that one should avoid? I've been cross checking against chicagogangs.org after some advice from a friend there now, but the info hasn't been updated since '08. I'm less concerned with myself than I am with my girl being able to feel relatively safe, especially after where she's been living in LA.

Edited by BrettSD

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I've found a few really promising places in Hyde Park. I'm aware of what a pain in the ass it can be to get in and out of the area via public transit, but what about crime?

I saw some earlier posts about the area, but are there specific streets and places that one should avoid? I've been cross checking against chicagogangs.org after some advice from a friend there now, but the info hasn't been updated since '08. I'm less concerned with myself than I am with my girl being able to feel relatively safe, especially after where she's been living in LA.

IMO, stay north of 60th St. and east of Cottage Grove for sure, but the farther east, the safer things feel. I have friends who live in west Hyde Park who've had minor break-ins, and they have long walks to get to and from the express buses downtown. Personally, I think it's ideal to live within a few blocks of the 6/X28/171 bus routes along S. Hyde Park Blvd - the people I know who do seem happier with their experience in the neighborhood and feel less isolated (totally anecdotal, but maybe helpful). That said, I think people overstate the safety concerns sometimes. Safety isn't as block-by-block as it might be in some other neighborhoods... within the bounds of the neighborhood, there aren't really good streets/bad streets to my knowledge.

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Of the 28 grad housing options at UChicago, is there any which should be avoided?

Not really. They're all pretty much located in well populated areas. Most people will tell you to avoid living "south of the Midway," which is around 60th Street. I'm not sure which graduate program you are attending at UChicago, but Harris and the Law School are both south of the Midway. This area isn't as terrible as people make it out to be, but it can get creepy at night because there isn't much going on. It's also right on the border of Woodlawn and Hyde Park, which is not always comforting. I personally would recommend living elsewhere only because I prefer being near grocery stores and multiple modes of transportation. My favorite parts of Hyde Park are near 55th street and Hyde Park Blvd, and 53rd street. I was an undergrad at the U of C, so I don't have any information on specific graduate housing buildings, but that area provides you with transit that will take you directly to campus and back home, plus out of Hyde Park to either Kenwood, the Loop or other South Side neighborhoods.

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I've really been enjoying this thread, so thanks for all the insight, everyone.

Anyone know anything about E Madison Park near UChicago? Was placed in grad housing this morning and have been Googling, but if anyone has anything to say about safety? I had my fingers crossed for a larger apartment around Kimbark, but I think I'm now in closer proximity to grocers, and right up against the Metra.

Edited by dispositif

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Hi everyone,

I am interested in neighborhoods which are within biking distance from UIC. I know the busses and trains are easy to use, I just feel more comfortable on bike (but being on the blue line as backup would be nice).

I come from Minneapolis, and I gather that there aren't really any houses within miles of campus, it all seems like brownstones, or new-ish generic apartment slabs. For anyone familiar with Minneapolis, I currently live in the Seward neighborhood, and would be interested in a similar quiet urban neighborhoods in Chicago, if that exists. Seems like you need to go out to Oak Park? Is out there really 'suburban'?

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Not really. They're all pretty much located in well populated areas. Most people will tell you to avoid living "south of the Midway," which is around 60th Street. I'm not sure which graduate program you are attending at UChicago, but Harris and the Law School are both south of the Midway. This area isn't as terrible as people make it out to be, but it can get creepy at night because there isn't much going on. It's also right on the border of Woodlawn and Hyde Park, which is not always comforting. I personally would recommend living elsewhere only because I prefer being near grocery stores and multiple modes of transportation. My favorite parts of Hyde Park are near 55th street and Hyde Park Blvd, and 53rd street. I was an undergrad at the U of C, so I don't have any information on specific graduate housing buildings, but that area provides you with transit that will take you directly to campus and back home, plus out of Hyde Park to either Kenwood, the Loop or other South Side neighborhoods.

By grad housing, do you mean the residential services at UChicago? have they already begun to send out placements? I thought those weren't out till August.

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By grad housing, do you mean the residential services at UChicago? have they already begun to send out placements? I thought those weren't out till August.

Yes. Residential Services processes housing applications in order that they receive them. It's also determined by your requested move-in date. They pull all the applications for a move-in period and place applicants in order of when the application was received. I applied late April for a mid-August move-in date and received an offer the first week of June.

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for comparison, I applied late April for mid-September move-in and haven't received an offer yet. I've been living in summer bliss not thinking about the upcoming upheaval, so I almost DON'T want to get an offer too soon!

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I was wondering if anyone else here has had success in finding a Chicago apartment while living out of state. Also, just needed to vent a little here, because I am VERY frustrated...

I will be moving to Chicago in September for grad school. I currently live about three hours away and work a full-time job, which basically only allows me to go apartment hunting on weekends. With that said, it would be preferable if I only had to take one weekend trip, since it's kind of a long drive. Anyhow, so far the vibe that I have gotten is that Chicago apartments turn over at the last-minute and that they turn over quickly. This makes me very, very nervous, as I do not like the idea of having to wait until the last-minute before moving to find an apartment, nor is that very feasible for me. Ideally I would like to find a lease ahead of time. As in, NOW, or at the longest, by the beginning of August. I'm not willing to sign a lease for a place I've never seen before. I would, as a last resort, but I really would rather not if at all possible. So far what I am seeing in hearing is that apartments are not advertised for rent until a month or less before the lease begins. As I said, this makes me extremely nervous. Where I'm from it's the norm to apartment hunt about 3-4 months in advance, so this is all very strange to me. You would think that landlords would like to be guranteed that their apartments are always full so that they get as much money as possible. Case in point: a friend of a friend is moving to Chicago this week. She was not able to find her apartment until last week. I really do not want this to be me!

My strategy so far is to pick a Saturday to go to Chicago and see 3 or 4 apartments that I'm really interested in. I was going to go next weekend, but I'm beginning to see that this is probably not realistic. If that fails, I will have to wait until August because my parents-being parents-insist on going with me and this was the only mutual weekend we have off this month. I'm also wondering how far ahead of time I can make appointments for showings. It's not like my job will allow me to sit on the phone all day Friday so I can talk to landlords. I was hoping to be able to do all the calling around on a day that I have off of work. Any insight into this whole predicament would be helpful. I used to actually enjoy apartment hunting, but I haven't even started yet and I wish it were just over already! I'm tired of losing sleep over this. : /

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Butterfingers,

I hear you. I am moving to Chicago on Aug 1 from about 1000 miles away. I was apartment hunting from afar for about a month and lost out on three apartments because they just turned over faster than the realtor could send me the photos. I was immensely frustrated. About two weeks ago (six weeks before my move-in date), I flew out for 48 hours, viewed 14 apartments and picked one. It was exhausting, but it worked. I love my new place and I had everything squared away six weeks before the move in date.

I made my appointments from about a week ahead of time for my favorite places (though a couple of those rented before I got there) up until I was boarding the plane in Boston to fly out to Chicago. I also kept checking the listings while I was there and scheduled viewings for a few places almost on the spot. It's absolutely one of the most stressful things I have done. And I've been apartment hunting in Boston a half dozen times in the last ten years. Chicago is just something different altogether. But it is possible. I saw a number of listings for Sept 1 in the neighborhood I'm moving to, but it might not be the same part of the city as you. I'd definitely say to pick more than 3 or 4. I had 4 top choices, three of which were great from the descriptions and photos and utterly disgusting in person. 14 was probably too many, but I figured if I was there, I may as well just spend the time looking at everything within my price range and move-in date.

Good luck!

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You must be living in a different neighborhood than the one I'm moving to. I called about a dozen landlords today and all of them told me the same thing-that they don't know yet if they will have openings for September 1st and will not know until August. So I guess I have no choice but to wait until then. I am frustrated beyond belief. I actually called about apartmetnts a month ago, at which time I was told they would know at "the beginning of July." psssh.

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I don't think you'll realistically need much more than 4-6 weeks to find a place in Chicago. I think lm0324 had a good strategy. You have to go apartment hunting with a checkbook in hand basically, ready to sign that day. That's how I got my place. Just set up about 5-10 showings in one day. If you find something you like don't hesitate to put a deposit down. ALSO, check the bed bug registry before you sign!!!! http://bedbugregistry.com/

You could also try using apartment people or chicago apartment finders.. I've personally never used them, but I've heard that you should low-ball your budget because they will show you apartments just over your budget to increase sales...

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Psychgurl, you read my mind! I decided to try out both of those services and set up appointments for this weekend. I've heard mixed reviews about both, so I'm honestly not expecting too much from them. I thought it would be worth a shot though. I've heard of the Bed Bug Registry too and will definitely be checking it before signing any lease. The mere thought of them gives me the major creeps.

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Hmm, I asked for the same, and I'm afraid I won't hear till the beginning of September - which is too late. If I get something I don't like, there's really not much else I can do. Is anyone here looking for a potential flatmate? I have seen some great 2br/3br and 4br apartments that have now been put up for rent. They're affordable, great locations, and would be nice to share with a bunch of other mature graduate students. PM me if anyone's interested.

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