Neighborhood Spotlight: Bridgeport

U.S. Cellular FieldBridgeport isn’t just the home of the former Daley mayors and the White Sox stadium. This South Side neighborhood, which tends to not get as much attention as Wrigleyville or the Gold Coast, is full of plenty of hidden gems, ranging from great local eats to top-notch art galleries.
The median home price for a single family home in Bridgeport is $243,000 with home values increasing 5.7 percent in the past year, according to Trulia. This is a bit higher than the Chicago metro average price of $187,700, but still relatively affordable compared to other neighborhoods such as the Gold Coast, where average home prices are closer to $300,000. There are currently 85 homes for sale in Bridgeport with prices ranging from $116,002 for a four bedroom, one bathroom home that is 966 square feet to $1,792,052 for a five bedroom, six bathroom home that is 3,125 square feet.
The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Bridgeport ranges from $700 to $750. Rents for two-bedroom apartments range from $800 to $2500.
Bridgeport is served by the Chicago Public School District 299 and the Burnham School District 1545. The neighborhood is also home to several private and Catholic schools. St. Barbara Elementary School offers small classes and a variety of extracurricular activities, including volleyball, baseball and basketball. Students also have the option of attending De La Salle Institute, a private high school that values academic, social, artistic and athletic growth.Bridgeport Coffee Exterior
Bridgeport has a population of 33,820, and is the 13th best neighborhood in Chicago, according to StreetAdvisor, a website that offers thousands of neighborhood reviews written by local experts. The neighborhood earned high marks for its neighborly spirit, parking availability, cost of living and dining options. However, if you are a Cubs fan, you may not love living in the area, since this is White Sox territory.
Here are a few picks for great shopping, dining and entertainment.

  • Fabulous Freddie’s Italian Eatery. Stop by for a breaded steak sandwich, which is a local neighborhood staple. The Italian beef, pizza and loaded fries are also great menu options.
  • Nana, which was featured on the popular Food Network show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, is a restaurant with an emphasis on local, sustainable cuisine made of ingredients from more than 30 local farms. Menu selections include cheddar truffle mac and cheese, southern buttermilk fried quail and beer battered fish and grits.
  • Bridgeport Coffee Company.  Provides locals with fair trade certified coffee from around the world and also has a selection of sandwiches, baked goods and more.
  • Gio’s Cafe and Deli. The perfect spot for homemade Italian cooking with a Sicilian spin. Enjoy everything from pasta, chicken and seafood, and be sure to order spumoni or cannoli for dessert.

Coyle and Herr ExteriorShopping

  • Bridgeport Art Center. Once the Spiegel Warehouse, the Bridgeport Art Center is now home to a variety of artists and designers, as well as the Bridgeport Art Gallery. The gallery boasts 3,000 square feet and exhibits sculptures, jewelry, woodworking and more. The art center is also home to Coyle & Herr, a furnishings consignment warehouse with 12,000 square feet of unique furniture, accessories and art.
  • Grandstand Limited. If you want to snag some Sox gear before opening day, this is the place to go. Find hats, jerseys and everything else you could possibly need in both retro and modern styles.
  • Blue City Cycles. Since Chicago is one of the most ‘bikeable’ cities in the United States, it’s probably a good idea to know where to go when you need any cycling gear. Blue City is a great place for locals to purchase new bikes and bring in their current bikes for basic maintenance and repairs.

Entertainment and Nightlife

  • Maria’s Packaged Goods and Community Bar. Craft beer? Check. Decor that includes chandeliers made of beer bottles? Check. DJs in the house every night? Check. This is one nightlife spot you won’t want to miss.
  • Zhou B Art Center. A great place to check out exhibits from talented local artists. Don’t miss Third Friday events, where you can network with a variety of artists in the dynamic Chicago arts community.
  • Tommy’s Gun Garage. Looking for some great live entertainment? Then stop by Tommy’s, which presents Chicago’s longest running audience interactive dinner show.

Bridgeport Art CenterTransportation

  • CTA:  Orange line trains.
  • Airports: Airports: O’Hare International Airport is 30 minutes away via car and more than an hour away via the Blue and Orange “L” lines. Midway International Airport is about 20 minutes away via car and 40 minutes away via the Orange “L” lines.
  • Parking: It is easier to find street parking in Bridgeport than in other neighborhoods, but be careful of getting caught in traffic on Sox game days.

So, whether you’re a Sox fan and want to attend more games or whether you’re a young professional looking for affordable rent in a neighborhood with a strong community feel, Bridgeport may be the place for you.
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