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Old 08-13-2012, 09:13 PM
Location: Chicago
95 posts, read 170,484 times
Reputation: 139


Hello from Chicago! In the Chicago forum, some comparisons have been made between Chicago and New York neighborhoods. I'm curious if anyone here is familiar enough with both cities to do that for Boston and Chicago. I'm visiting in the fall, and wanted to get a better feel of the neighborhoods, and thought comparing them to Chicago ones would help.

Thanks! Looking forward to my trip!
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:38 PM
Location: New Mexico --> Vermont in 2019
9,045 posts, read 17,317,574 times
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Two very different animals. Neighborhoods like the North End, South End, Beacon Hill, and Back Bay are distinctly Bostonian.
Nothing in Boston really resembles Michigan Ave, Lakeview, South Side , etc. Though both share some history of taking in massive late 19th and early 20th century European immigration they are also so different it's hard to match kindred neighborhoods IMO. The only city that really made me think "this reminds me of Boston" is Philadelphia.
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Old 08-15-2012, 03:34 PM
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
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I second that it is really difficult to compare. I am originally from the Boston area, lived in Chicago for a year and a half, and recently moved back, so I am pretty familiar with both cities.

Boston in general is much more compact and on a smaller scale. Many of Boston's neighborhoods used to be their own cities and towns, and are centered on commercial districts or "squares." The total lack of a standardized street grid leads to a much different experience and feel to the city.

That being said, I can attempt a few comparisons:

- The really nice streets in Lakeview/Lincoln Park east of Halsted in Chicago remind me somewhat of the residential portions of the Back Bay in Boston.
- The heart of the Lincoln Square business district in Chicago reminded me of many of the "Squares" in Cambridge/Somerville, but especially Harvard and Davis.
- I visited Roscoe Village once and the feel of it seemed Boston-ish to me for some reason but I can't put my finger on why or where in Boston it would be.
- Ethnically and politically speaking, Bridgeport in Chicago and South Boston seemed to me to have had similar histories, but look very different visually; and South Boston has experienced much more gentrification.
- The area around Fenway Park is not wholly unlike the area around Wrigley Field in terms of there being many restaurants/bars/clubs/etc.

Hope you have a great trip out here this fall.
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Old 08-15-2012, 09:25 PM
Location: Chicago
95 posts, read 170,484 times
Reputation: 139
Thank you both!
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