There is Still New Construction Available: 3550 W. Lyndale in Logan Square

The downturn in the housing market hasn’t stopped some developers from completing new product such as this 7-unit conversion at 3550 W. Lyndale in Logan Square.

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The units are 2, 3 and 4 bedrooms with deeded parking available for $10,000 extra.

They have 9-foot ceilings, central air and washer/dryers in the units.

Everything has been renovated.

The bathrooms have Toto toilets and the kitchens have Grohe fixtures, stainless steel appliances and granite countertops.

The largest unit is a 4 bedroom, 3 bath duplex down with 2,110 square feet.  It is also the most expensive at $339,000.

Most of the units are 3 bedrooms, 2 baths at 1370 square feet. These are priced between $279,000 and $289,000.

The building has secured special financing so buyers can put down just 3.5%.

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You can see more pictures and information at the development’s website: 3550 W. Lyndale.

Tim Vaughn at Keller Williams Gold Coast has the listings.

3550 W. Lyndale: some of the 7 units

  1. Garden, 2/2.5, 1285 square feet: $189,000
  2. Unit #2E, model unit, 3/2, 1370 square feet: $284,000
  3. Unit #1W, duplex down, 4/3, 2110 square feet: $339,000
  4. Parking is $10,000 extra

113 Responses to “There is Still New Construction Available: 3550 W. Lyndale in Logan Square”

  1. It feels like no man’s land out there…

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  2. “It feels like no man’s land out there…”

    Stumbling distance to the Burlington, plenty of twee little hipster girls to practice your craft on at least.

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  3. Also, MBR off the living room is no fun if the kids, roommates, etc want to watch a movie late a night and you want to get some sleep. Odd floorplans…

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  4. “The building has secured special financing so buyers can put down just 3.5%.”

    And the cycle continues.

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  5. hahahahaha

    who would pay this much to live in this crap location?

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  6. And is this a new construction? if so, piss poor job on the exterior masonry, the bricks are already bleeding that chalk crap…

    Looks like a gut rehab to me though… and why do realtors insist on doing that stupid panning of pictures! So annoying!

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  7. Oh gosh another apartment to condo conversion. i dont get it?

    I saw some empty aptarment to condo crapversion things a few months ago when driving down laramie from fullerton to belmont. its greed that got them converted and no one is buying them.

    Side note; anyone remember Irv’s on laramie?

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  8. I have a question for you all – and yes, I realize it will likely spark some heated conversations – but where in Logan would be considered the “best” areas to live? I know the boulevard itself, but unless I will the lottery, that likely will not happen. North of Logan…or South? North or South of Fullerton, East or West of Kedzie….you get the idea.

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  9. “where in Logan would be considered the “best” areas to live”

    I think the area around the Boulevard itself, between Fullerton and Diversey (subject to not being too close to the highway), between highway and probaby Kedzie (and probably “above” Milwaukee as well).

    I think there is rough agreement among Logan Sq people who post on here (of which I am one) who post on here about the area around Boulevard being best. Disagreement maybe about exactly where the cutoffs are (which I don’t know that well on the west side and which are inherently fuzzy).

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  10. “where in Logan would be considered the “best” areas to live”:
    as a Logan resident and landlord
    –not too west
    –definitely not too south west (i.e. towards Fullerton & Pulaski)
    –I personally like the North East best; quieter, less hipster, less congested, easier Highway access. I take the train 2-3 times a year so I don’t mide walkin 5 blocks to the El instead of 2-3.
    –if the train is important then north of Milwaukee and south of Logan, between Cali & Kedzie is the best. It also more lively there- bar & restaurants on the square, Cali, & Milwaukee.
    –some of the block just south of Milwaukee are dingy due to the overhead El.
    –I also like 2-3 blocks west of Kedzie between Fulerton & Diversey
    –Also not too south, never south of Armitage, even Fullerton. Every time I have a unit for rent I get people who went to Apartment Finders/Apartment People/etc and told them they wanted Logan. The Apartment shills then proceed to take them into Humbolt Park calling it Logan.

    LS is a huge ‘community area’ so there’s everything for everyone (except for those that think life ends once you live Lincoln Park, we have nothing to offer them)

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  11. “I think there is rough agreement among Logan Sq people who post on here (of which I am one) who post on here about the area around Boulevard being best.”

    Those homes are amazing, everythime I drive, walk, bike by I see some new amazing detail of these historic mansions.

    Heres the link for this Sept’s house walk; there are also pics on the site:
    http://www.logansquarepreservation.org/housewalk.html

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  12. The Chi. Arch. Foundation also does a walking tour starting in May:
    http://caf.architecture.org/Page.aspx?pid=733

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  13. Also of note is that a new Enoteca Roma is going up on California north of Fullerton, across the street from Buena Terra. I think this is a sign (albeit a rather small sign) that popular/good restaurants are recognizing the potential for the area and are moving in while the getting is good.

    Predict this area to be like Wicker Park / Bucktown in about five years.

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  14. The best place to live in Logan Square is Bucktown.

    But if you must, east of the square, either north or south of the boulevard. I like east of California, but to each his own.

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  15. also recommend Urban Belly for amazing noodles & rice. They do the whole wierd communal dining thing. But the foods worth sharing a table with strangers. Everyone just ignors each other.

    The sushi/Japanese place on Cali, just south of logan, is great too. Dunlay on the Square is good for sandwiches and burgers.

    Maybe the CakeGirls will move west into Logan now that their Roscoe V. place burned down.

    I’m also interested in the italian place opening up on the NE corner of the square (its replacing that scumbag rental agency-Continuim)

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  16. “Predict this area to be like Wicker Park / Bucktown in about five years.”

    If I had a nickel for every time someone said this in the last 10 years, I could just move to Roscoe Village and be done with the whole debate…

    My response is always this: Logan Square is not going to be the next Bucktown or Wicker Park, because the gangs are not leaving. Neither are any of the other residents. Logan Square has an Hispanic population that is rooted and in no rush to leave. Bucktown and Wicker Park didn’t have the same communities in place, so turned over. So the old houses aren’t getting fixed or torn down. The renters aren’t getting booted out like they did in Bucktown, etc.

    Just my 2 cents, but I think this is the case.

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  17. 3 Bedrooms and 2 Bathrooms crammed into 1370 square feet? Unreal.

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  18. Ahhh the old gentrification predictions… good for a laugh at least

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  19. I don’t think there will be “gentrification” in the sense of renovated cottages going for $1MM. I genuinely wonder though about whether some neighborhoods will develop to the point of being attractive neighborhoods for upper middle class families looking to spend $350-500K on SFH close in to the city. There really isn’t such a thing at the moment (Logan meets this in some respects but schools are not good and general safety could be a little better). There are really desirable areas in which SFH are out of the reach of many (maybe they will come down a lot as some think, but I don’t think they will ever be that low). Not that the bubble has subsided at least somewhat, do some neighborhoods improve to the point they became good but affordable options? There’s certainly demand out there.

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  20. “Bucktown and Wicker Park didn’t have the same communities in place, so turned over.”

    who exactly did you think lived there?

    Logan Square isn’t as likely to gentrify as there is a longstanding and deep progressive community which made Logan Sq their line-in-the-sand. They don’t call it the “People’s Republic of Logan Square” due to recent developments or Revolution Brewing.

    These folks will not greenlight zoning changes with impunity the way Wicker Park folk did under pro-gentrification aldermen – Rey Colon was put in office in no small part due to people aggravated by zoning issues.

    I don’t know if I’d bank that either the Latino community or it’s gang subset are there for the long haul. All immigrant communities have eventually decided more space and better schools trump neighborhood pride, and I see no evidence Latino folks are any different. The wall has already been hit on Milwaukee, go to the old Polish town area at approx Milwaukee and Belmont and go a bit south, and although the Polish businesses are leaving there is no sprouting up of new Latino businesses replacing them.

    The driving factor of everything is property taxes – and Latino folks aren’t going to be any more keen on the never-ending increases any more than anyone else is. Factor in the drop in construction/drop in day labor jobs and I’d imagine you’ll see more turnover, at least along Milwaukee and the Blue line, for a long time.

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  21. It’s called the NW and portions of the SW side but who wants to live among the hoi polloi?

    “Not that the bubble has subsided at least somewhat, do some neighborhoods improve to the point they became good but affordable options? There’s certainly demand out there.”

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  22. “It’s called the NW and portions of the SW side but who wants to live among the hoi polloi?”

    My comment was also focused on places close in to the city (and I would add with some walkability as well). Oriole Park is nice and affordable with a good elem, but my commute would suck and there would be nothing to walk to. The thing is, it’s not as if Chicago is so dense that everywhere close to the city had been bid up. If Logan continued improving on the margins, and had a good school, it would be really attractive. And in a non-bubble world, that could happen without prices become stratospheric.

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  23. “who exactly did you think lived there?”

    I could be mistaken, but I don’t think Bucktown or Wicker Park were ever Hispanic communities the way that Logan Square was and still is.

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  24. “Oriole Park is nice and affordable with a good elem, but my commute would suck and there would be nothing to walk to”

    DZ,
    You do know its only 10-15 difference from the logan stop to the harlem stop? and i think you need to take a trip over to oriole park area as there is MANY things to walk to. It doenst have trendy places but you have restaurants, cafe’s, groceries, and that whole harlem comercial strip, plus blue line stop to walk to. you are right on 90 for driving.

    I dont see how if a choice w/kids between logan and oriole one would even choose logan.

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  25. Groove77,

    Please don’t talk about such areas on cribchatter. You don’t want the clueless people currently bidding up prices in LogSq to goto OP and start bidding up the RE prices there do you? Time to remember that little thing called a secret.

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  26. “I could be mistaken, but I don’t think Bucktown or Wicker Park were ever Hispanic communities the way that Logan Square was and still is.”

    i may be reading you wrong, but the hispanic community really only came about in logan in the early 80’s maybe late 70’s and from what family members that lived in logan in the 40’s-70’s that the latin/hispanic community was there before the migration to logan. and given that wicker park back then was spill over of the boriquen (puerto rican) community of humbolt park area. and logan is more of the mexican decent as of the late 90’s and before that was the puerto rican.

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  27. “You do know its only 10-15 difference from the logan stop to the harlem stop? and i think you need to take a trip over to oriole park area as there is MANY things to walk to. It doenst have trendy places but you have restaurants, cafe’s, groceries, and that whole harlem comercial strip, plus blue line stop to walk to. you are right on 90 for driving.”

    Groove, a number of fair points. And I don’t think we would stay in Logan unless we decided to go private school route, which I don’t like for various reasons.

    I did look on CTA planner just now and seems to be 17 min difference between leaving from Harlem versus California (my current station). I also think the house would be a little farther from station than I currently am (I’m under 5 min) given potential places in Oriole or Norwood Park. So maybe 20 or so min difference each way. On plus side I might be able to do some work on the train. We will try to walk around there a bit more and see what it’s like.

    Any changes in the housing front in Grooveland?

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  28. and also down milwaukee ave starting at central park in the early 80’s was polish which passed through logan over the decades.

    i bet there is a link or a book out there that tracks the polish comunity all the way up milwaukee ave from i think the starting at division.

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  29. I remember Logan in the 80’s being very hispanic (i often visited my great grandmother in Logan – she stayed in the city when my grandmother/mother moved to the ‘burbs in the 60’s).

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  30. Groove, there’s a listing at 5854 N Nickerson, listing at $304K, sold for $510K in 2005, right in the middle of circle in Old Norwood. I think bank owned. Ready for your renovating skills.

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  31. “Time to remember that little thing called a secret”
    Good call Bob, but it will stay secret cause its not new trendy (a ghetto hood turned yuppie) most just assume its a burb. but if it does get trendy it will help my buddies that live in edison and oriole get more $$$ for there places its all win-win :)

    Dz,

    Oriole is a easy 5 minute walk to harlem! norwood though is more a 10 minute walk but the nice part of norwood in which you would want to live is a 2 minute walk to the metra and most of norwood’s shops revolve around the metra stop so it all condensed right there.
    but when thinking about it if your comute would be metra then why not edgebrook because i think shops and walkabilty is double if not triple than norwood.

    “Any changes in the housing front in Grooveland?”

    we went to two open houses this past weekend (still passively looking) it helps that we dont NEED to move just WANT to.

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  32. “Groove, there’s a listing at 5854 N Nickerson, listing at $304K, sold for $510K in 2005, right in the middle of circle in Old Norwood. I think bank owned. Ready for your renovating skills.”

    Groove is DONE doing major work, only want turn-key! with the little one time become a precious commodity and personal groove time become priceless.
    another is that if i am going to pay for private HS i can just get a cheaper nicer house in Galewood or pay more for a house with a good elm/hs combo and call it a day.

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  33. “but when thinking about it if your comute would be metra then why not edgebrook because i think shops and walkabilty is double if not triple than norwood”

    Metra’s not great for me b/c my office is not close and my schedule is unpredictable so that leaving on a schedule is not ideal.

    “or pay more for a house with a good elm/hs combo and call it a day”

    That may end up being the right call.

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  34. “Metra’s not great for me b/c my office is not close and my schedule is unpredictable so that leaving on a schedule is not ideal”

    I bet if the Bar Car was still on the metra you would consider it a viable option :) I forgot metra was out for you, so i would just skip edgebrook but at the harlem stop there is Cta Park and ride! (or the streets around there are non permit parking so its park and walk a block and ride).

    You ever think of Oak Park as an option?

    “That may end up being the right call”

    the right call would be getting the F out of the city really getting the F out of Illinois (or at least cook county)!

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  35. Groove:

    Off topic, but a follow-up to our previous discuss on Banana Spheel. My wife and I saw the new Cirque Elvis show in Las Vegas this weekend. The critics were so-so about it, but we enjoyed it. Full of good music, costumes, lighting, dance, and acrobatics. The theater is located in the Aria Hotel in the new City Center. The hotel was jammed and LV was very crowded.

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  36. Sabrina,

    Many thanks for featuring our client, 3550 W. Lyndale, and for linking to the Web site we built for the development.

    We’ll be posting a video tour in the near future.

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  37. “You ever think of Oak Park as an option?”

    We have thought about OP and RF. (There’s almost nothing we haven’t thought of as an option.) Pros are schools, closer for my wife to her parents in the SW suburbs, walkability, nice houses. Cons are high taxes, the PROP thing (although someone said that above about Logan Sq and I don’t mind the people there), and it feels a little cut off from the city (traffic on Eisenhower is crap a lot of the time). Also, for a good commute I’d want to be close to the el, but that’s not really in the Mann district.

    Really like this place.

    http://www.redfin.com/IL/Oak-Park/1027-Chicago-Ave-60302/home/13272524

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  38. what Groove said on the history – I think every ethnic group makes an attempt to oversell their history/presence in a neighborhood, but really, everything is always changing to some degree ethnically-speaking.

    What is a bigger & IMO more relevant question is what change is happening economically. Homes depreciate – so it’s always some combination of people unable to afford the upkeep/repairs and their successors, the fixer upper people.

    If you don’t get fixer upper types, the buildings eventually can’t be salvaged – so then you either end up with a ghetto, or you get teardowns & more expensive new construction.

    It always amazes me to see how many people are still hanging on in Lincoln Park and Lake View with just really, really shitty looking frame houses. I assume they are using every possible tax break (homeowner & longtime resident & perhaps senior).

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  39. DZ-you can at least say you live in a frank lloyd wright house, although his shittiest and ugliest one…

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  40. Poppa Steve, LV has been banned in my household i am grounded from nevada per wifes orders. (long story)
    We have been in cultural exile for the latter part of march (do movies count) and will continue for a while as we shore up excess spending to move. then the summer/neighborhood festivals start. (you can see we are a fall and winter performace family).
    I have always wanted to catch a vegas cirque show as friends and family say they dont hold back in LV (heard more money is thrown at them there).

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  41. “3 Bedrooms and 2 Bathrooms crammed into 1370 square feet? Unreal.”

    in the past 5 years a large amount of the 2/2’s built/converted were about 900-1100 sqft. While not huge, 1370 sq ft for a 3/2 is not out of line with the recent new construction sizes.

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  42. Groove:

    We have seen KA, Love, Mystere, Zumanity, and now Elvis. I wanted to see O, but there were no discount tickets available. We did pay full price for Elvis. All the cirque LV shows have dedicated theaters, work perfectly for them.

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  43. “which works perfectly for them.”

    I wish there was an edit function here.

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  44. “Really like this place.”

    dont get me started at the huge list of redfin fav’s in that area :) but the mann isnt the only great school there, from the residents i speak to they are very happy and safe with schools there (except HS) and feel that the schools in OP are, if dont test high, a superior education than top chicago Elm’s. and i think the green line harlem to clark/lake is like 25 minutes. and if you live close to green line walkabilty is insanely great!
    OP is out of my price range (for areas with bad HS) but we are waiting/hoping place in RF in our acceptable range.

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  45. “in the past 5 years a large amount of the 2/2’s built/converted were about 900-1100 sqft. While not huge, 1370 sq ft for a 3/2 is not out of line with the recent new construction sizes.”

    To each their own. I would hate this. No common space is perfect for people that like to hole themselves up in their bedrooms and bathrooms. Also great for people with no friends.

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  46. “you can at least say you live in a frank lloyd wright house, although his shittiest and ugliest one…”

    That bad? I like it but what do I know. Is this any better:

    http://www.redfin.com/IL/Oak-Park/636-N-East-Ave-60302/home/13273671

    Groove, you almost certainly know this already, but the south of part of OP has some lower priced places, in good Lincoln elem, and close to blue line.

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  47. “All the cirque LV shows have dedicated theaters, work perfectly for them.”

    I like the touring shows but i am itching to see a full on vegas show. maybe one day :( what is touring this summer? Alegría? but heard mixed to bad reviews for it.

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  48. “Groove, you almost certainly know this already, but the south of part of OP has some lower priced places”

    yeah but anything south of lake, well ok washington, isnt the “real” oak park to me. when you get over there it becomes “just another burb” and what good is that? plus have you been on the blue that way yet?

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  49. DZ – Thats better, beautiful!

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  50. “plus have you been on the blue that way yet?”

    Memo to self to actually try out the commute before buying a place.

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  51. ““plus have you been on the blue that way yet?”

    Memo to self to actually try out the commute before buying a place”

    well i havent been on that line over dare in bout 5 years it might be many times better?

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  52. I have lived in LS for 30 years. Since I moved in people have been saying it was the “nexI” neighborhood. It always got better but very slowly. It has finally happened. It is hot hot hot. I rented 5 apartments over the winter. None stayed available for more than 2 weeks. I get unsolicited calls every week. I never experienced that before. There are rehabs of small buildings going over all over. I was told that 2639 Fairfield sold in 5 days and had multiple offers over the 499,000 list. I rented to a couple from Oak Park who said it was boring and who wanted to live on Blue line. Revolution is packed everyday. Longman & Eagle is a great new restaurant. I am gleeful.

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  53. “OP is out of my price range (for areas with bad HS) but we are waiting/hoping place in RF in our acceptable range.”

    Groove, have you considered Riverside? Not on the El line but on the Metra and minutes from Brookfield Zoo. It’s also expensive but there ARE some more affordable houses there. Architecturally distinct community.

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  54. The Blue line from Clinton to Oak Park Avenue is a nice evening commute. The train spacing is more regular than on the Green line heading west from Clinton in the evening and the westbound Blue trains are less crowded.

    Inbound in the morning the Green line is as good as the Blue.

    Run time is about 16-20 minutes on both lines.

    Oak Park to Clinton is my daily commute.

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  55. sabrina,

    I dont need a EL or Metra my company isnt really near good public transportation so driving is just fine for me. Riverside has crossed our mind once or twice and since you brought it up we will be looking at options there. is there an “area” there we should particularly look at? i dont know the ins and outs there just know i hate the sears at the riverside mall.

    Its looking like we are just going to move a bit more west to Galewood and do private school. we are actually waiting for a open house on MLS# 07387988 and see the layout (from the pictures it looks funny) and if we like it we will call up Gary L and get gung ho on looking at places.

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  56. Groove:

    I don’t know the ins and outs of the neighborhoods in Riverside but it’s a small city with really original houses, many of architecture significance, nice parks etc.

    I think you’re referring more to the part of town closer to Harlem.

    Anyone else know? But something to consider.

    I also like Galewood. I saw this house when I was just looking around the neighborhood. I’ll post on it and see what everyone else thinks.

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  57. By the way- I don’t think I saw anyone else commenting that Chicago saw the largest decline in the Case-Shiller 20 city index in January (0.8%).

    Gary- what’s going on?

    Condo prices have also declined 20% from the peak (according to the index.)

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  58. Most of the time when I look at housing prices in some exclusive suburb, like Oak Park, or Riverside, or Barrington, or even some of nicer parts of the green zone, all I see is some older generation – the Bob Toll type – trying to pawn off onto a younger generation their over priced home, in some feeble attempt to fund what’s left of their retirement…

    http://www.redfin.com/IL/Riverside/157-N-Delaplaine-Rd-60546/home/13291347

    $255,000 in 1998, and now they want $675,000; Even with inflation its only valued at $456,000 since 1988.

    Maybe the older generation is right, they’ll kick their children out of the house after the second kid when they’re 40, and it will cost their children 45 to 50 percent of their income to buy a home, because – their children will be only marginally employed like all the hipsters, recent college grads, and ne-er’do’wells that populate my generation.

    “I asked Toll what our children – my kids are both under 8, I told him – would be paying when they’re ready to buy. “They’re going to live with us until they’re 40,” Toll said matter-of-factly. “And when they have their second kid, then we’ll finally kick them out and make them pay for the house that we paid for. And that house will cost them 45 to 50 percent of their income.” Bob Toll, Chasing Ground, October 16, 2005, New York Times by JON GERTNER.

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  59. “Riverside has crossed our mind once or twice and since you brought it up we will be looking at options there. is there an “area” there we should particularly look at?”

    We ruled it out for other reasons but I think schools are not ideal. My vague recollection is that high schools is not good, don’t remember about elementary/middle. Very picturesque town.

    “we are actually waiting for a open house on MLS# 07387988″

    Nice big lot. anon will approve when you have everyone over for your housewarming. Is that a bathtub in the bedroom?

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  60. Second correction (damn i’m tired, long day): house purchased in 1988, not 1998.

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  61. Homedelete:

    Thanks for the cite to the actual name of that infamous Bob Toll interview where he said what you quote. I love the part about living with the parents until you’re 40. LOL!

    I’ve been trying to find this article for forever because I wanted to pass it on to people who didn’t believe me that the head of one of the largest home building companies actually said that the top of the boom.

    Classic.

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  62. I was about to say “why would someone buy here when they could get the 2734 kimball /http://cribchatter.com/?p=7849 “. . .

    . . . but whaddaya know, that place went under contract finally. Dang theres a lota places sellin in the LS.

    (And, Bob, I didn’t even see a car stereo expropriation contingency, but I’m not an expert.)

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  63. danny (lower case D) on March 31st, 2010 at 1:30 am

    Toto toilets??? I can’t say that without chuckling.

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  64. “I don’t know the ins and outs of the neighborhoods in Riverside but it’s a small city with really original houses, many of architecture significance, nice parks etc.

    I think you’re referring more to the part of town closer to Harlem.”

    I was referring more towards the area towards harlem and close to berwyn. I think the week after easter wife and i will take a trip over there and have a look around.

    “Is that a bathtub in the bedroom?”

    thats what i am trying to figure out about the layout?

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  65. This listing is a hoot: $340,000 to sleep in the basement in a marginal neighborhood. Gentrification is likely stopped dead in Chicago’s plausibly gentrifying neighborhoods. Mortgage financing is likely to get much more expensive, underwriting requirements more stringent, significantly more public-sector jobs will disappear due to state/local budget problems, and CPS will increase class sizes to point where middle class will no longer participate (except attempting rigged selective enrollment process for elite handful schools). There is plenty of $500,000+ home inventory to provide rich pickings for whomever can still afford those homes. But comparing Chicago’s median income to median home price still proves that Chicago is a relatively poor city with relatively expensive home prices. There just aren’t enough high-income buyers and high-income households to gentrify anymore neighborhoods. Look for more neighborhoods to go into decline, as rents decline, home prices decline, and landlords become far more willing to take Section 8 tenants.

    River Forest or Riverside, thumbs up. Riverside has a wide range of home prices; 517 Berkley @ $367,000 looks like another architect’s house. River Forest had 1523 N Clinton @ $399,000, but it’s now under contract. River Forest is a great suburb, relatively close to downtown, better policed than Oak Park, and near decent shopping (Oak Park’s Trader Joes and Book Table, Brickyard Mall in Galewood, etc) and cheap dining options (Freddie’s in Cicero, Johnnies in Elmwood Park, Alpine Deli in RF, and Depot in Austin, etc.). RF taxes are a very high, though village board is finally looking to do PILOT (payments in lieu of taxes) agreements with Dominican and Concordia Universities to compensate for their enormous tax-exempt land-holdings while receiving disproportionate municipal services.

    Riverside taxes are relatively low, with no universities and only a handful of churches; it’s elementary schools are RF’s equivalent and RFBFHS is stronger and smaller than OPRFHS. RFBFHS even made that Newsweek “best HS” list two years ago or so.

    OPRFHS IS a problem for many OPRF parents, unless your kid is a self-motivated + high-achiever + well-behaved + emotionally-mature “say no to drugs” kid. No alternatives other than Catholic or one Lutheran HS (Walther in Melrose Park). OP K-6 elementary schools are okay, but parents complain about the two 7-8 jr highs. Oak Park is a beautiful suburb with many excellent houses with great architecural character on tree-canopied streets, but it requires a certain amount of tolerance (municipality has serious financial problems) and more tolerance (schools and minor crime).

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  66. Architect,

    saw that clinton place, i being stubborn as usual kept it off our list cause it wasnt in the lincoln district.
    but there is a new listing that our eye is on but it backs up to the tracks and has a tiny kitchen (usually the deal breaker for us) the rest in that price range most always lacks C/A and i REFUSE to do window units ever again.

    btw grooves dream home is the brick victorian on lathrop and oak.

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  67. Groove, if you are thinking private school route, what about Forest Park. I haven’t looked there in a long time but prices must be much lower than OPRF and you have walkable downtown there as well as OP downtown perhaps if you’re close. But don’t private school costs really add up if you have multiple little grooves?

    Architect, very helpful detailed info about schools.

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  68. Architect, it’s amazing, I totally agree with you, yet, so many posters here are like Goldilocks looking for high income earners. Everywhere they choose to look they see $100k+ households who can afford to buy $350k garden apartments. And when you mention that there aren’t enough high income buyers to continue gentrification, they point out one house in Logan that sold in two days with multiple bids over the $499,000 listing price. See? People have money, gentrification isn’t over – they say YOU just don’t earn enough money. Never mind that your profession has been decimated financially, there are others who are doing just fine despite the 10% unemployment and 16% underemployment rate.

    “There just aren’t enough high-income buyers and high-income households to gentrify anymore neighborhoods. Look for more neighborhoods to go into decline, as rents decline, home prices decline, and landlords become far more willing to take Section 8 tenants.”

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  69. “Groove, if you are thinking private school route”

    Only as a back up if little grooves dont test well (our get lost in the magnet requirements). already got a savings for mini groove 1 to cover k-12 private at 7k a year. i would rather roll than into the college fund. and for me if going private then i am not leaving the city it would be no point to trade my soul for the burbs and still do private.

    “But don’t private school costs really add up if you have multiple little grooves?”
    true and we dont have a private fund for mini groove 2 as there is not a mini groove 2 yet but if am only dropping 300k on a house with 5k taxes then its more than easy to swing that fund. would rather not but still wont be that bad.

    (yes the city address is a mental thing i cant shake, grandparents, parents, and i born and raised in the city)

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  70. “we dont have a private fund for mini groove 2 as there is not a mini groove 2 yet but if am only dropping 300k on a house with 5k taxes then its more than easy to swing that fund. would rather not but still wont be that bad”

    I’m not sure it’s just a matter of having saved or being able to save for private school. I guess I would think about comparing (a) what the Galewood house costs incl taxes plus likelihood of needing to pay private school X cost of private, versus (b) cost of house incl taxes of a house in a good school district. And other quality of life stuff of course. This place looks alright, maybe a touch close to highway. Of course, it’s doesn’t solve high school costs.

    http://www.redfin.com/IL/Chicago/5630-N-Ottawa-Ave-60631/home/13566018

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  71. Nice find DZ! good looking place.
    since we dont need a train for commute and dont mind areas yuppie whitey’s are afraid of we can pic a galewood or a riis park area and get 3-4x the house for the same price.

    but like you said its all about weighing the pros/cons and costs and whats important. We like our lifestyle, wife a stay at home mom, no stress about money, three good vacations a year and one Wisconsin vacation, Many reserves (our reserves have reserves), shows, dinners, SHOPPING, new cars, new computers every 2 years, new phones each year, up to 5 strollers now, new TV’s every 5, did i mention shopping? (we are keeping the economy going)
    now we could move to a great burb or green zone and drop 500-600k on a place (a bit more if reserves are tapped) but then it would change our lifestyle and wife would go back to work (now $$$ for a nanny) and we would live in a kewl hood but wont be able to take advantage of the amenities, and may not be as happy, and may be farther from work.

    all of these things/options/trade-offs have been an ongoing convo at the dinner table since last aug-sept
    we are passively looking which makes it all that much more peaceful and enjoyable.

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  72. Sometimes I wonder if this worrying about schools isn’t a kind of mania (I don’t mean worrying about safety). My kids went to so-so public schools and did fine in life; both my daughters went to UIUC and grad school in Madison. So-so schools didn’t hurt them.

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  73. Old Man,

    I think you’re hitting on something, but it may be a little different than the way you have expressed it.

    It’s not so much worrying about getting into good vs. so-so schools, but rather that most (or perhaps no-one) really knows the difference. It becomes conventional wisdom that certain schools are good, others are so-so, but these conclusions are based on extremely flimsy grounds (such as school rankings by % of students meeting or exceeding cut scores on state tests).

    As far as this development goes, I think you can get a much better location in LS for around the same money (or perhaps even same $).

    Exhibit 1: http://www.redfin.com/IL/Chicago/3036-W-Logan-Blvd-60647/unit-3/home/21810647

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  74. Yes its due to the obsessivee AAA personality helicopter parents that dominate society today. Give it up, your kid is going to either be successful or a failure without your help no matter how hard you try or how successful you are and money you throw at him.

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  75. It is a mania. Especially when I see folks complaining about the schools where I live in Oak Park. OPRF is a good high school. Yeah, it has it’s share of stoners, etc but what high school doesn’t? All of the elementary schools are good. Parents tend to obsess about being in the Mann district though, but none of the schools are remotely close to being bad schools. Mann is just surrounded by the wealthiest of OP residents and it is the least diverse.

    Every parent thinks their kid is “gifted” and one day will heading off to Harvard. Of course, this is far from reality.

    I had the unfortunate experience of attending a bad school in my youth. Schools in Oak Park aren’t remotely close to being “bad”. Bad in most of these parent’s minds is only 90% of the students passing whatever flimsy test is used for kids these days instead of 99%. Bad in my mind is the majority of 8th graders reading at a 2nd or 3rd grade level. Bad is having a day care for STUDENTS’ kids at the high school.

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  76. “shows, dinners, SHOPPING, new cars, new computers every 2 years, new phones each year, up to 5 strollers now, new TV’s every 5″

    Thanks for keeping the economy going, that’s a lot of spending! My view: new computer every 4-5 years. car for 10 years or 100K miles whichever comes first, one stroller, new tv every 8-10 years.

    “It becomes conventional wisdom that certain schools are good, others are so-so, but these conclusions are based on extremely flimsy grounds (such as school rankings by % of students meeting or exceeding cut scores on state tests).”

    “Yes its due to the obsessivee AAA personality helicopter parents that dominate society today.”

    I agree a lot with Roma’s point, which I think also addresses Sonies’ point to some degree. A lot of this isn’t finding the best school, it’s not obsessing about getting into Decatur/Edison/Latin/etc, it’s about not being stuck with a truly bad neighborhood elementary. E.g., Bell or Blaine are some of the in demand schools. I don’t think they’re actually that good, but they are acceptable, which many others are not even in areas with pricey houses (although changning to some degree for north side schools and I’m hoping Bucktown/Wicker).

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  77. I beg to differ on your opinions sonies, roma, Old man.

    I will turn to myself and a friend (which i mentioned on here before). Had a friend graduate out of a CPS HS as valedictorian went to college and was way way not prepared for the STATE school she went to and eventually failed out.
    I going through CPS and being in a few schools saw both the top 5 and the bottom 5. If i didnt have the drive and mainly good parents i would not have made it and i barely did. It wasnt until college a professor saw my learning disability and was shocked not one teacher saw it. College was hard for me and i always test tops in the state so that says the basic elm and HS prep was insufficient.

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  78. Don’t forget Wells high school when listing those ‘bad’ schools. My wife said she’d send our kids there, i laughed and said, hell no we’ll move to lincoln park before that ever happens

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  79. Dz,

    What we really want to do (may actually happen) is rent our house out for 2-3 years and then rent a 2br in One Museum park (with a super view) for that time then sell.

    the great thing is nothing is set in stone and we have many options. the only option we dont have is selling our house for what i think its worth :(

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  80. “What we really want to do (may actually happen) is rent our house out for 2-3 years and then rent a 2br in One Museum park (with a super view) for that time then sell.”

    I like that you’re the only person I know with a wider ranging set of options than I’m considering. From Kenilworth to Galewood (is there anyone else who has ever considered both at the same time?) and spots in between.

    Would be pretty nice for your wife and kid to have access to the museum campus and park/lakefront, especially on a day like this.

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  81. One of the reasons that parents obsess over getting their kids into the “good” schools is so they can turn off their parenting, go back to working 16 hours a day to afford their 60%DTI mortgage, and blame any education problems on said “good” schools.

    Schools are certainly important, but being an attentive parent is much more so.

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  82. “Bad in my mind is the majority of 8th graders reading at a 2nd or 3rd grade level. Bad is having a day care for STUDENTS’ kids at the high school.”

    unfortunately, this describes many Chicago Public high schools. add to that needing to set aside a classroom for the police to detain students.

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  83. We lived in Logan Square for 10 years. For 2 years sent kids to CPS magnet school. As 10 year CPS teachers, saw a lot we didn’t like. Moved to Riverside. Schools were great for 2 years, ran into bad teacher and unresponsive administration. Ended up sending them to local Catholic School and then St Ignatius. They got a great education there. But of course I could have done that in Logan Square with a lot less cost. And now kids are off and we moved back to Logan Square, which is an exciting place. The suburbs are boring.

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  84. Just to clarify, I was not saying that a kid’s success is independent of their parents’ efforts (Sonies) or that all schools prepare students equally well for college academics (Groove). I certainly disagree with Sonies’ point (except that parents are overly neurotic, that’s right on!), and with Groove’s rejoinder (CPS schools are inferior to private(?) ones because some top-scoring CPS students find college work extremely difficult).

    On the one hand, there is pretty good evidence that a variety of things grouped under “parents’ efforts” are important factors in life outcomes; and on the other, very little reliable evidence that certain elite schools produce appreciable differences in academic success once you hold other factors constant.

    I was really only saying that most parents (and home buyers) don’t have very good grounds for distinguishing “good” from “so-so” schools, if we could even determine what that meant.

    One step in the right direction would be parents (and home-buyers) considering what they want in a school, and then trying to determine if a school fits that. To do that, they will probably need to do more than check a school’s general reputation for being ‘good’ or ‘great,’ and certainly do more than look at the available data on test scores. For one, they will probably have to visit and talk to key people. It would help if schools facilitated that.

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  85. “(CPS schools are inferior to private(?) ones because some top-scoring CPS students find college work extremely difficult)”

    that was one example i have more! plus i having gone/barely made it through CPS i know first hand the system.

    but i will agree parents are helicopter/overly neurotic put a helmet on little jimmy and make sure every thing has round edges (little jimmy is 13).

    but when little jimmy that went to CPS is jerking off in a cup to make rent and little cameron that went to adai stevnson is pulling in 200k a year plus bonuses and had a cake walk through grad school.

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  86. Hey Groove

    I don’t mean to minimize your personal experience (people tend to trust their own experience more than larger sets of data and evidence, take a look at the way sellers price their houses!), but… Jimmy and Cameron likely have other things distinguishing them than just the high school they attended.

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  87. “I like that you’re the only person I know with a wider ranging set of options than I’m considering. From Kenilworth to Galewood (is there anyone else who has ever considered both at the same time?) and spots in between.”

    Only reason our options are wide is that we are looking to hunker down at our next place grow old and retire in that place, all while giving our son and/if future kids all the opportunities possible to do what they will love. just trying to find the close to perfect option for that.

    “Would be pretty nice for your wife and kid to have access to the museum campus and park/lakefront, especially on a day like this.”

    hahaha almost took a sick day to do that! friday we will be at the zoo then the shed. *all lake front friday* if it wasnt going to be so windy we would bike between the two instead will be dropping $70 for parking probably :)

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  88. “Jimmy and Cameron likely have other things distinguishing them than just the high school they attended”

    true its also the friends they keep (and other factors), cameron grew up in an environment where all his friends and kids before him know higher education (college) is a standard and your expected to graduate with a BA if not a MBA. While jimmy and his friends are in a culture where to graduate HS is “making it”.

    get some scholar sociologist to examine me and my friends from HS or grade school and you will find the of ten close friends in HS that have a college degree there is only one of us that has it and of the ten closest in Elementary school there are 3. of the ten in HS 4 didnt finish ad have a GED and for elm 2 didnt and one has a GED.

    so thats what i have seen and know, is it fact? NO. Is it possible it still hold true? Sorry would rather not find out.

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  89. “if it wasnt going to be so windy we would bike between the two instead will be dropping $70 for parking probably”

    The priciest membership at zoo has free parking, which you can use (at least during zoo hours) even if you’re not going to the zoo (green city market etc.). My wife goes almost weekly when the weather is good. Good deal if you go at least 7-8 times a year.

    No good ideas for parking at museum campus. Also get reamed parking at Millenium Park.

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  90. “The priciest membership at zoo has free parking”

    good heads up on that one, i know she went 5 times last summer and we went together 3 times and its $25-$30 to park i think, hmmm guess what we are buying right now? (just texted her).

    “Also get reamed parking at Millenium Park”

    Thats where we park if weather is decent its a good visual walk and fun.

    i think i am used to getting jacked for parking the $5-$10 increase over the last few years hasnt really stopped me but i do complain more :)

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  91. I volunteer at a local literacy agency. Here are two of their stats:

    Approximately 53% of the adult population in greater Chicago have low or limited literacy skills

    20% of all adults read at or below the 5th grade level

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  92. If your kid is smart, ambitious, hard working and cunning he’ll probably do OK.

    What schools teach cunning the best? I guess that’s best left to parents.

    I was thrown out of Iggy’s after 2 years and finished at Austin. I got away with things at Austin I didn’t get away with at Iggy’s (obviously) but I had to work just as hard for good grades at Austin as at Iggy’s. But that was 1964; I’m told things have changed.

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  93. logansquarean on April 1st, 2010 at 6:28 am

    #”Approximately 53% of the adult population in greater Chicago have low or limited literacy skills

    20% of all adults read at or below the 5th grade level”

    Man, that is mighty depressing.
    Can’t blame it all on the schools, that’s for sure.

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  94. “i know she went 5 times last summer and we went together 3 times and its $25-$30 to park i think”

    I had in mind a lower daily rate but obviously depends on how long you’re there. The membership with unlimited parking is only $120 (less if you buy 2 yrs at same time). At least when we did it last year, you can buy the membership when you visit and they’ll give you a validated coupon for free parking. Takes a few weeks to get hte mag stripe card.

    Once you have unlimited free parking, it becomes a really attractive pop in place if you’re in neighborhood.

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  95. “it becomes a really attractive pop in place if you’re in neighborhood”

    it works perfect for parking on my long lake runs :) wife bought the membership yesterday we are official now

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  96. There’s also another stat that I don’t have access to right now so I can’t quote it directly, but there is a very high number of households with children that don’t have one single book.

    “Man, that is mighty depressing.
    Can’t blame it all on the schools, that’s for sure.”

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  97. “20% of all adults read at or below the 5th grade level”

    Man, that is mighty depressing.

    It only seems depressing (or rather, there is something to be depressed about, but it isn’t this). It is important to keep in mind that “grade levels” are simply averages on tests scored to produce bell-curved distributions, and that grade level equivalents are given by using vertically linked tests. So, generally speaking, 50% of the population of any age is “below grade level” and as they get older, more and more people will become classified as numerous grade levels behind.

    So, saying x% of x-year olds read below x-grade level is a good way to try to cause an impact, but it usually doesn’t warrant any meaningful conclusions.

    In any case, to even get this number, the testing company would have had to administer a lot of normed assessments to random samples of adults in Chicago, and I sincerely doubt this ever happened. It’s probably the equivalent of “made up.”

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  98. “are simply averages on tests scored to produce bell-curved distributions”

    This shows you little you know about statistics or the standard normal distribution. Please stop talking.

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  99. I don’t know Bob, it’s how the IQ tests are done, it has to do what you are calling average, and what sort of range you want. You don’t see anyone get an IQ score of either 2 or 2,000 – they skew the test scoring to get a range that is considered acceptable.

    I think the upshot of that for this discussion is that being an A student at a very poor CPS school is basically like being the old “tallest midget” thing. and you are kidding yourself if you don’t think tests in the schools aren’t rigged to produce a certain result – as an Iggy grad I was infuriated by these CPS kids getting an extra 2 points for AP classes and so on.

    I had a college professor who used to rail on and on about that, because as he would say “having 100 kids score more or less between 70 and 100 tells me nothing of worth – I want them to let me score tests where kids are getting from 20 – 100, and to adjust the grades accordingly.

    (apologies to short folks, but I don’t know how to soften that to make the same point)

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  100. Skeptic,

    Then that’s the problem with the schools altering the results.
    True standardized tests do seem to produce a standard normal distribution, as well as countless other phenomena observed in nature. This distribution is extremely common throughout nature.

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  101. the whole school system is designed to produce certain results – it’s why teachers always complain about having to “teach to the test” instead of imparting critical thinking skills.

    really, the whole No Child left Behind concept was this in action – the federal government really doesn’t give schools much choice when their funding depends on test scores.

    the sad thing is that those of us who went to private (or better public) schools know it doesn’t have to be an either/or. If you teach kids how to think & how to learn, they will test well as a result.

    but unlike CPS students (sorry groove) they’ll also be less likely to drop out of high school to take jobs that have no future, will understand how not to get conned by the easy availability of credit so prevalent in America, and all those other common sense things it seems so many CPS kids just don’t get.

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  102. “but unlike CPS students (sorry groove) they’ll also be less likely to drop out of high school to take jobs that have no future, will understand how not to get conned by the easy availability of credit so prevalent in America,”

    conned by the availability of credit is more middle class big ten grads that were conned the hardest. Little Pookie, gohost, and Krazy folks only used thier credit to get a 30k car, 5k sound system, and 20k rims.
    Taylor, bridget, and Jacob on on the hook for a zero down 2/2 they bought for 600k and is only worth 300k and have a heloc for 200k and a bimmer payment (might be on the heloc).

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  103. LOFL. touche!

    now, if someone could just explain me why in the heck a) rims cost so much and b) you’d spend more on something you don’t even see than a sound system you can actually enjoy.

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  104. Plus Little Pookie, gohost and Krazy have no problem sticking it to their creditors if things change (or even not) as in their social circles its even encouraged.

    Whereas Taylor, Bridget and Jacob believe that a debt is some form of economic and moral obligation and its frowned upon defaulting if things change, because thats what middle America has been conned into believing.

    Its the biggest lie out there that debt is some sort of moral obligation–tell that to the investment banks who owned CDS’s in ailing firms and drove them to the point of insolvency.

    Debt is never a moral obligation (unless its bail money), its always an economic obligation only.

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  105. to add little pookie and loco folks see the credit as a gift (even if they dont pay it back) and Taylor, bridget, and chad see the credit as a right and expect nothing less.

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  106. oh BTW to the far above rant about kids not going to college, the Trades are a highly acceptable alternative and often do pay more and get better bennifits than a college grad. (dont want yall thinking i look down on that or stuff)

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  107. The one good thing about the economic situation we’re in is it is likely producing a generation of very cynical youngsters coming out of college deep in debt and unable to get a meaningful job.

    Why is this a good thing? Its a silver lining really: young college educated people tend to vote Democrat (especially women). Thoroughly desensitized to politics and cynical they aren’t likely to vote.

    You can have all the Hope you want working as a barista at Starbucks young educated formerly idealistic liberals. But I want my Change for my overpriced coffee. (Well iced tea in Bob’s case).

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  108. “get better bennifits than a college grad”
    see CPS screwed me up i cant spell and talk on the phone at the same time.

    “now, if someone could just explain me why in the heck a) rims cost so much and b) you’d spend more on something you don’t even see than a sound system you can actually enjoy.”

    if i could explain that i would win a nobel prize or golden globe or something.

    “have no problem sticking it to their creditors if things change (or even not) as in their social circles its even encouraged.”

    yeah cause your brother from another mother (homeslice) has a 300c with a 19% rate and brags about it so its ok.

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  109. I am tempted to take Bob’s friendly advice to stop talking. But before that I want to clarify:

    1) This has nothing to do with any debates over IQ tests. Reading grade equivalancies have to do with achievement testing, not aptitude testing, irrespective of the debate re: true “aptitude” testing not confounded by instruction, etc.

    2) It also has nothing to do with whether the distribution of performance of students on an assessment IS normal or is MADE so (here we would need to look at item construction and analysis, etc)

    It is simply about the way “grade equivalencies” are determined, and the peculiarities of the curve-fitting that has to be done to extrapolate to spread-out age levels. You should generally use extreme caution when interpreting grade equivalencies that are very far from age-level. I would go on about why this is so, but I’m sure Bob would prefer to explain it.

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  110. “Whereas Taylor, Bridget and Jacob believe that a debt is some form of economic and moral obligation and its frowned upon defaulting if things change, because thats what middle America has been conned into believing.”

    On this, I think Bob is spot-on.

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  111. Check the Web site on Monday, when teh developer (a client) will be announcing price cuts on most of the units:

    http://3550lyndale.com/

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  112. DZ: “[1027 Chicago]”

    It’s a really nice house (i’ve been in it), but the bedroom layout is just unworkable with two kids, I think.

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