« on: March 12, 2008, 10:14:21 PM »
Another perspective on where to live in Chicago --
I live on the northern edge of the Gold Coast and love it. Its about 1.5 miles from the law school. I bought my condo, a 600 sq. ft. "L shaped" studio, which worked for me financially, but obviously thats not an option for everyone. Also, a few other law students live in my building or in nearby buildings, as a lot of the condo owners rent to law school students.
If you have the money for a down payment I would advocate at least looking into buying. Even with my mortgage, condo fees, homeowner's insurance, and property tax, my condo is less than what I would pay to rent for a similarly sized place in Streeterville. Also, prices have dropped since I bought, which is not good for me but might be good for you!
Anyways, I live in a mid-rise building and look west, so I have a great view of the city and fabulous sunsets. I like it because the other buildings are lower, usually a max of 5 stories and I'm close to the lake. Its also consderably quieter in the evenings. Rarely am I disturbed by outside noise, even on the weekends whereas in Streeterville even on the upper floors there can be noise from car alarms, construction, etc. Also I've got a lot of different public transportation options: 3-4 good bus lines that are close, and walking distance to both the red line and brown line (about 4 blocks) on the el.
My commute to school ranges from anything to 15 min, if the buses are timed perfectly, to 40 min if there's tons of traffic or a long wait for a bus. Also when the weather is nice and I don't have too many books I can walk along the lake to school which takes about 25 min. For me this is totally doable and I wouldn't want to be closer to school. I like the separation. Also, for me personally it encourages me to stay at school and get my reading done before coming home. That way I don't have to carry the books and once I get home I can do whatever I please, which I enjoy.
(Can you tell I'm procrastinating working on my final legal writing assignment of the year!)