Uptown is an extremely diverse neighborhood, both culturally and economically. Still a little rough around the edges in some spots, Uptown has seen major redevelopment and rejuvenation of historical buildings over the last decade.
It spans the area from Irving Park Rd (4000 N) to Foster Ave (5200 N), from Lake Michigan west to Clark St south of Montrose and west to Ravenswood Ave (1800 W) north of Montrose. Uptown includes a number of smaller neighborhoods: Buena Park, Clarendon Park, Margate Park and Sheridan Park, among others.
Public Amenities, Services, Civic Organizations
It’s hard to beat the amenities on the lake in Uptown. It is home to Montrose Harbor, many dog-friendly areas, Montrose Beach, basketball courts, soccer fields, baseball fields and a skate park. The Chicago Public Library has 2 branches in Uptown, The Uptown branch and Bezazian.
Uptown is a neighborhood of communities and there are many resident-run organizations. One of the most active is Buena Park Neighbors, founded in 1997; BPN has been an integral part of the well-being in that area of Uptown. Uptown Update is an online source which reports on the area news and politics, an invaluable tool to keep residents informed of activities in their community.
Condominiums dominate the scene. While there are many new high-rise and mid-rise developments, much of the flavor of Uptown is seen in the buildings from the early 1900’s. In the 1950’s many of the mansions that characterized Uptown were subdivided into smaller spaces, resulting in some very unique and distinctive homes today. Some of the mansions remain intact, especially along a street in the Margate Park section called Castlewood Terrace, one of which belonged to Chicago’s own, late, Studs Terkel.
Transportation is easy in Uptown, the Red Line stops at Wilson, Lawrence and Argyle. There are numerous bus-lines including three express routes from the lakefront to downtown.
Shopping, Dining and Nightlife
Uptown is home to major grocery stores like Aldi and Jewel-Osco as well as smaller venues including the recently opened Fresh Harvest Market and specialty grocers like Tai Nam Grocery and Makola Supermarket.
Uptown boasts the newest Target in the city at the controversial Wilson Yard Development. Borders is just up the street on Broadway, where you’ll also find Smoke Dreams and Uptown Bikes. Quite a few strip malls run along Sheridan, with small storefront chain stores and mom-and-pops side by side.
Dining options are endless. Argyle Street hosts plenty of Vietnamese options, including the newly designed BaLe and the fabulous Pho Xua Restaurant. Traveling south on Broadway are Silver Seafood serving authentic Chinese, Crew with tavern fare and the newest addition to the Broadway Lawrence area, Demera, which serves traditional Ethiopian in a charming atmosphere and has live Ethiopian music Friday and Saturday nights.
The nightlife in Uptown is centralized at Lawrence and Broadway. The Green Mill, a famous cocktail lounge and jazz club is known for its days as a speak-easy. The Aragon Ballroom, The Riviera and The Kinetic Playground are the places to go for live music. Live theatre includes The Annoyance, About Face and the long-established Pegasus Players who make their home at Truman College.
A handful of schools reside in Uptown, including the Disney Magnet School, McCutcheon Elementary and Truman College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago