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Old 12-03-2017, 09:38 AM
 
1,083 posts, read 571,820 times
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As far as suburbs go (which ain't sayin' much), Evanston is pretty damned solid. It's arguably second behind Oak Park as the least suburb-like suburb. That being said, do not fall for any marketing from Northwestern (or anyone else) attempting to convince you that living in Evanston is the same as living in Chicago. It's not. It's a college town situated beyond the most residential far-reaches of the city proper. Unless you plan to take a really long CTA ride into the central part of Chicago once or twice a week, you're probably just as well off in a place like Madison or even Champaign-Urbana or West Lafayette, where there is a bit more of a local scene and still a reasonably doable commute into Chicago on the weekends. Sure, I realize those places don't have the US News and World Report rankings of Northwestern (if you're one of the suckers who still believes in that horsedung), but in that case whey not just go to U of C? High ranking AND in the city!
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Old 12-03-2017, 09:34 PM
 
Location: St.Paul
222 posts, read 143,385 times
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I do not like it's location no easy access to highways if you want to go to IKEA on the weekend or something. It's urban planning is bad parking is bad and it's roads are confusing.
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Old 12-04-2017, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Chicago
944 posts, read 896,327 times
Reputation: 1124
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkylarkPhotoBooth View Post
As far as suburbs go (which ain't sayin' much), Evanston is pretty damned solid. It's arguably second behind Oak Park as the least suburb-like suburb. That being said, do not fall for any marketing from Northwestern (or anyone else) attempting to convince you that living in Evanston is the same as living in Chicago. It's not. It's a college town situated beyond the most residential far-reaches of the city proper. Unless you plan to take a really long CTA ride into the central part of Chicago once or twice a week, you're probably just as well off in a place like Madison or even Champaign-Urbana or West Lafayette, where there is a bit more of a local scene and still a reasonably doable commute into Chicago on the weekends. Sure, I realize those places don't have the US News and World Report rankings of Northwestern (if you're one of the suckers who still believes in that horsedung), but in that case whey not just go to U of C? High ranking AND in the city!
Just a note, we aren't looking for colleges. My fiance is an industrial chemist applying for a job in the North Chicago/Waukegan area and we are looking to balance that commute with our desire to live in the city. Other than Ravenswood, though, it seems like Evanston is the nearest spot to the city where the Metra commute would be manageable and we wanted to get a good sense of what the character of the place is like, I had imagined it being much more connected to Chicago than you seem to imply. For reference's sake, most of our friends in Chicago live in Edgewater so I was thinking Purple to Red Line access would be convenient for us.
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Old 12-04-2017, 05:12 PM
 
16,678 posts, read 19,245,694 times
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I lived in Evanston for over 35 years. It is a *small city* of its own. It has some college feel, but that is not overwhelming. It has a ton of activities if you have kids. It is an easy commute into the downtown area (3 metra stops and 7 *el* stops). It has its own buses within the town as well. If you are going anywhere along Lake Shore Drive, that is easy as well. Access to the lake and beaches are great and it has reciprocity with Skokie for the pool there (Skokie residents use our beaches and we can use their pools). The library is fantastic - my dd when she was going to Carnegie Mellon said Evanston's library beat the Carnegie library for resources. Northwestern does provide activities for residents as well as for their students. You can go to concerts and plays there and there are also professional theaters -

Picolo for comedy (Panto)

Piccolo Theatre

Mudlark with young people performing, Piven theater again with young people performing.

Mudlark Theater

Northlight Theater is only a stone's throw away in Skokie.

https://northlight.org/

There are also great High School Productions, YMCA productions and Fleetwood-Jordain Productions. ETHS has a fantastic theater department and many fine plays and musicals.

Light Opera works does a lot of Gilbert and Sullivan

https://www.musictheaterworks.com/

There are also music venues that are fantastic

Space on Chicago Avenue
Celtic Knot Irish Pub
Rhythm Room Bar & Bistro
Red Line Tap
Northwestern's Pick Staiger Concert Hall

Events in the summer include:
Custer Street Fair
Evanston Green Living Festival
Taste of Evanston
Starlight Concerts
World Arts and Music Festival (was the Ethnic Art Fair when I lived there)
Starlight Movies
Evanston Art & Big Fork Festival

As you can see there is plenty to do without leaving Evanston and you have good access to Chicago's many activities as well.
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:05 PM
 
16,678 posts, read 19,245,694 times
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Evanston Restaurants are also many, varied and good.

Tapas Barcelona
Lou Malnati's Pizza
Joy Yee's Noodle Kitchen
Pete Miller's Seafood
The Lucky Platter
Campagnola
Blind Faith Cafe
Crêperie Saint Germain
D&D Dogs (good gyros)
Cross Rhodes (casual greek food - authentic as owner is Greek herself)
Le Peep
The Olive Mountain (a favorite of mine)
NaKorn
Taco Diablo
Kabul House
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:25 PM
 
Location: Maryland
4,621 posts, read 6,047,209 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nana053 View Post
Evanston Restaurants are also many, varied and good.

Tapas Barcelona
Lou Malnati's Pizza
Joy Yee's Noodle Kitchen
Pete Miller's Seafood
The Lucky Platter
Campagnola
Blind Faith Cafe
Crêperie Saint Germain
D&D Dogs (good gyros)
Cross Rhodes (casual greek food - authentic as owner is Greek herself)
Le Peep
The Olive Mountain (a favorite of mine)
NaKorn
Taco Diablo
Kabul House
Campagnola is fan-effing-tastic! But I am biased, as I had my wedding reception there
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Old 12-06-2017, 05:41 AM
 
Location: Chicago
2,884 posts, read 4,285,887 times
Reputation: 2757
Quote:
Originally Posted by brodie734 View Post
we wanted to get a good sense of what the character of the place is like, I had imagined it being much more connected to Chicago than you seem to imply. For reference's sake, most of our friends in Chicago live in Edgewater so I was thinking Purple to Red Line access would be convenient for us.
Not sure what you mean. The street grid flows seamlessly from Chicago to Evanston. Maybe you mean something else? Now, the area right around the border at Howard is rather iffy, but overall, Evanston is a great small city. I don't find it to be overly dominated by the university at all.

Ok, I reread the comment you were responding to. THat person completely misunderstood what you were asking.
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Old 12-06-2017, 08:38 AM
 
1,083 posts, read 571,820 times
Reputation: 1385
Quote:
Originally Posted by brodie734 View Post
I had imagined it being much more connected to Chicago than you seem to imply.
That's how they try and sell it, but it doesn't fit reality, in my view. I mean, I guess it's all relative-- it's certainly more connected to the city than Libertyville, Naperville, or Crown Point, but it's still pretty far out there from a downtown perspective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brodie734 View Post
For reference's sake, most of our friends in Chicago live in Edgewater so I was thinking Purple to Red Line access would be convenient for us.
Ah....Yes, visiting people in Edgewater will be pretty easy from Evanston, but Edgewater is a way-north mostly residential area. It's a long haul to the closer-in parts of the North Side from there, let alone to Downtown or the South or West Sides.
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:39 AM
 
1,825 posts, read 886,513 times
Reputation: 2280
I think it's one of the best places to live in the Chicago metro. The only negative thing about it I would say is lack of easy access to expressways and to other parts of the city. For example, Oak Park is much more accessible than Evanston. Just getting to O'Hare from Evanston is a royal pain the ass.
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Old 12-06-2017, 01:15 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 75,095,976 times
Reputation: 18511
"Lack of easy access" is not the same as "disconnected". It is actually quite straightforward to take SURFACE STREETS from Evanston to O'Hare, generally about a 30 minute drive even in rather heavy traffic...

It is sort of silly to say that there is anything different about getting between Evanston and "other parts of the city" without a realization that essentially all the region's expressways and transit options are set up as "spoke and hub" type system that funnels everyone into the Loop as opposed to having any easy "cross town" connections. Fact is that O'Hare is at the junction of the Kennedy(I-90), which is the main NW "spoke" into / out of Chicago, and the the Tri-State (I-294) which is sort of a "bypass" that theoretically links traffic between Wisconsin & Indiana but really is more of corridor of suburban commutes. Evanston lies east of the Edens(I-94) which is forks off the Kennedy coming out of the Loop and serves as a spoke for all of the North Shore. The transit lines mostly parallel these layout too so there it really is non-issue for anyone with any sort of work in a normal location. I don't doubt that delivery drivers who have to do logistics between far flung warehouses and residences / businesses would dearly love more options but opposition to additional expressways goes back decades -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crosst...ssway_(Chicago)
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