Without knowing your price range, it's hard to recommend all the neighborhoods that would fit your criteria, but there are certainly many to consider. As well as Lincoln Park, there are some excellent areas in Lakeview and Roscoe Village, which are just outside of Lincoln Park.
There are also some excellent options in the Old Irving neighborhood, Ravenswood, Ravenswood Manor, Lincoln Square, etc. The existing housing stock (type) will differ from neighorhood to neighborhood, but there is a lot of new construction in all the aforementioned.
If you would Iike, I could try and help pair you with an agent who is familiar in most, if not all these neighborhoods so you can discuss specifics as far as what your needs and desires are.
Hope this helps! Good luck!
You can live in any of a half-dozen areas on Chicago's northside (adjacent to Lincoln Park) and have access to parks, shops, restaurants, good coffee, and bookstores. The list, however, narrows, when you throw in good schools. The Southport Corridor in Lakeview boasts Blaine School - http://www.blaine.cps.k12.il.us/ - (Grace and Southport). North Center has a newly forged gem in the form of Coonley School - http://www.coonley.cps.k12.il.us/ - (north of Irving on Leavitt). St. Ben's/Roscoe Village features Bell School - http://www.agbellschool.com/ - (3730 N Leavitt). Each of these three schools has well-deserved reputations.
However, in addition to these local service elementary schools Chicago offers via the public school system magnet, gifted and regional gifted schools that provide outstanding educational opportunities. Plus you have private schools that include parochial and respected institutions such as Francis Parker, The Latin School, The French School, and The British School.
At the end of the day price plays a primary role. My clients relocating from outside of DC considering the Southport Corridor are viewing new construction custom homes priced roughly at $2.1MM. Right before Memorial Day my listing of a beautiful new home in North Center went under contract with a listing price of $1.35MM. The last home I sold in Roscoe Village closed last fall at just shy of $1.6MM. Resale stock in Lakeview and Roscoe Village softens to a range of $1.3MM-$1.5MM (North Center is among the city's hottest areas with older homes being purchased for land value).
Other enticing areas on the north side (should you opt for magnet, regional, or private schools) include Andersonville and Edgewater. Different from Wicker Park and Bucktown, these gracious neighborhoods are close to the lake and provide tree-lined streets that offer a pastoral feel inside of the city.
I hope this provides a glimpse into the wonderful city I call home. I wish you the best of luck with your search and hope you identify a real estate professional to assist you with your transition from DC.
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