Edgebrook’s lovely forests and rolling hills are a welcome exception to Chicago’s flat terrain and grided streets.
This northern Chicago neighborhood is known for its “suburb-in-a-city” feel. Residents enjoy a close-knit community, great parks and nature, and beautiful homes. And, top safety numbers and highly rated schools make Edgebrook a favorite for Chicago families.
One of the special perks of the area is its larger lot sizes, sometimes three times larger than the Chicago average. Lovely homes in a variety of styles dot the area’s tree-lined streets, but the area is known for the handsome brick residences dating back to the 1920s.
While the area is quiet and peaceful, getting downtown is easy with the Metra train and the Edens Expressway.
Edgebrook Neighborhood Guide
This quaint neighborhood on Chicago northwest side is known for its beautiful nature, small-town business scene, and welcoming community.
Edgebrook’s commercial center, near the Metra Stop on Devon, offers residents local shops, cozy restaurants, and convenient services. Some local favorite shops include My Sister’s Closet, a local clothing boutique, and Local Goods Chicago, which offers 100 local artisans from photographers to spice experts.
For familiar big box stores (Walmart, Best Buy, ect.) and an AMC movie theater, the Village Crossing Mall is just across the border in Niles. Happy Foods is a friendly neighborhood grocer, but you can also find a Jewel, Aldi, Costco, and Whole Foods nearby.
Edgebrook doesn’t have the largest food scene in Chicago, but it does offer some great options in a diversity of cuisines. Anything from Thai and Himalayan to family Italian and classic Chicago hot dogs can be found in the area. Some local favorites include Edgebrook Coffee Shop & Diner, a great local cafe and brunch spot; El Primo Conto, for delicious Brazilian food; and Piatto, a great family Italian restaurant.
Edgebrook has a great close-knit community. You can meet your neighbors on the area’s historic walking tours, local street festivals, or the holiday parades that take place year-round. A great resource for kids and adults alike is the two-story public library on Devon Avenue. As a residential hamlet, Edgebrook doesn’t offer much in the way of nightlife or big attractions (other than the great nature). What’s good for residents, however, is that the area is surrounded by local pubs, movie theaters, and live music venues.
Nature, Parks, and Recreation
Surrounded by two beautiful forest preserves, nature lovers are at home in Edgebrook. Within these, excellent walking and biking trails are perfect for a weekend stroll or a daily ride. One particular local trail, the North Branch Trail, is a Chicago favorite. The trail follows the Chicago River for more than 20 meandering miles.
In addition to forest preserves, Edgebrook also offers residents excellent parks and recreation. A great example of this is Edgebrook Park, offering open green space, baseball fields, and a gymnasium. The area also offers Billy Caldwell Golf Course or 18-hole Edgebrook Golf Course, both great public golf courses.
What is now the lovely, forested Edgebrook community was once used by local Potowatomie tribes as a hunting and burial ground. In exchange for negotiating the treaty of “Prairie du Chien”, the United States Government granted the land to Billy Caldwell. Caldwell was also known as Chief Sauganash, the namesake for the bordering “Sauganash” neighborhood. The Chief eventually sold his land to local farmers. In 1889, the area was annexed by the growing City of Chicago.
In the 1880s, railroad stops at Forest Glen and Edgebrook encouraged commuter settlement. What is now the Old Edgebrook Historic District was built specifically for the families of Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Pacific Railway employees. That said, the distance from the city meant that development was slow. House building only began in earnest in the 1920s. By the 1940s, Edgebrook began to take its modern shape as an affluent, “suburb-like” Chicago neighborhood.
In 1998, the Old Edgebrook district was honored as a Chicago Landmark District. Today, Edgebrook remains one of Chicago’s most livable neighborhoods with some of the city’s best recreation, nature, and public schools.
Edgebrook’s amenities wouldn’t be much use if the area didn’t have wonderful properties. Thankfully, that’s not the case. A suburb-like area, Edgebrook’s housing stock consists of mostly single-family homes, though a limited supply of apartments, condominiums, and townhomes can be found.
Both new construction and well-maintained older homes are available. An attractive feature of the area’s housing is the larger than average lot sizes, 5-10 feet wider than typical Chicago lots. Houses range in styles, and anything from Brick Georgians and English Tudors to charming charming Chicago bungalows can be found in the area.
On the whole, the area is somewhat pricier than the average Chicago area. Single-family homes in the area start at around $400,000 and luxury homes at the top of the market can be over a million. Condos and townhomes, mostly along Cicero Avenue, are more affordable, ranging from $150,000 to $550,000 based on size.