River West

Chicago, Illinois


For years, River West was little more than a fly-over zone between the Loop and the trendier North Side neighborhoods. However, River West has experienced a resurgence in recent years as developers sought to refurbish the neighborhood's shuttered factories into loft-style condominiums, meeting the growing demand for affordable housing near the Loop. Cool--but not quite hip--and professional--but just short of traditional--River West retains evidence of its factory roots while embracing a modern, urban aesthetic. River West is commonly seen as the more approachable and affordable option for those looking to live near their office, but at the expense of commute times and walkable amenities.

Homes in River West

Where To Live

Many of the former industrial buildings have been converted into large residential loft spaces, creating ample space throughout the neighborhood for potential residents. Those willing to meet a higher monthly price tag will be rewarded with modern condos and numerous amenities. These residences also provide short commutes to the Downtown area, the suburbs, and both airports, making River West a popular choice for those who want easy access to it all.

Price Vibes

River West is budget-friendly relative to the other neighborhoods in the Downtown area. So while homes are more affordable than, say, River North or the Loop, it's probably more appropriate to compare its value to neighborhoods on the city's Northwest Side, which is to say that good deals aren't unheard of, but you need to keep a close eye on inventory. Speaking of inventory, River West doesn't have a lot of it.

Around River West

Where To Eat

The western side of the neighborhood offers the most food options, with several restaurants lining Milwaukee Avenue. The sandwich options will prove helpful for those grabbing lunch on the go, while diners and pizzerias provide more generous portions for diners in no hurry. Several coffee shops specializing in premium blends will also appeal to workers ducking out of the office for a quick pick-me-up.

Friday Night Fun

Art lovers are sure to enjoy the galleries throughout the neighborhood, giving them several avenues to enjoy a cocktail hour on a Friday night while perusing photographs, prints, and other creations from local artists. Afterwards, facilitate more creative discussion by dropping by one of the bars that serve up classic cocktails and a trendy atmosphere.

The Perfect Sunday

The many yoga studios and fitness centers in the area will allow you to start your Sunday with some treatment for both your body and mind. Take it a step or two further by sampling one of the dance studios, or give your legs a break by relaxing with a book at a cozy cafe. Feel free to get some coffee to go, then take a walk by the railroad tracks to see a great example of Chicago's tough industrial spirit.

Transportation Options

The Blue Line, which runs from O'Hare Airport through the Loop and to the southwest part of the city, has a station in River West. From the station, it's typically no more than 10 minutes to the Loop. A bus line runs along Milwaukee Avenue, which is a major thoroughfare in the area and provides direct access to neighboring Wicker Park or the West Loop. Milwaukee Avenue is also historically friendly to cyclists and boasts long stretches of protected bike lanes. A popular route for cycling commuters—the street is somewhat affectionately known as "Hipster Highway"—drivers would be wise to be on the lookout for bikers.

Living Here

Locals Love

Access to the highway • Being able to access the rest of Chicago quickly and easily • Relatively quiet for location

Residents Say

River West is an interesting place to live because it's basically a blank slate, meaning that it's a neighborhood in the midst of an exciting transition. It's also within walking distance to the West Loop and Wicker Park but far enough away to be its own quiet enclave in the middle of everything.
- River West Resident

Homes for Sale

Think River West might be the right neighborhood for you?

There are plenty of potential dream homes for sale!

View Listings in River West

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Near North Side

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