I don't know cities, and I especially don't know this city
May 29, 2014 7:59 AM Subscribe
I'm interviewing for a postdoc position at the University of Chicago next month. I've never lived in a big city and I don't know much about Chicago at all. I'm going to be visiting and would like to at least get a feel for where I might want to live as a 30-something single woman, and how I would safely get back and forth from work. Advice please?
posted by you're a kitty! to Travel & Transportation around Chicago, IL (18 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
A friend of mine was a grad student at Chicago many years ago, and said that at least at the time, the campus was safe but the area surrounding it was scary to him (a tall guy). On the other hand, I've heard positive things about the city in general. I'm going to be moving to a big new city for the first time without any support system, and as a young woman that's a scary thing to do. So, safety questions!
Housing: I'll be looking for an apartment (with a roommate) in a fun, busy neighborhood. I've been specifically told not to live near the campus. I'd like to be cool restaurants etc., but really safety is my #1 concern — I want to feel safe when I'm home alone with the doors locked, and safe coming in and out of my building at night. From my preliminary searches, apartments in even the nicer parts of Chicago still seem to be reasonably priced when I compare them to NYC/SF (the only cities I know), so that's encouraging. What neighborhoods should I be checking out? I'd like to go visit them when I'm in town to get a feel for where I might want to live and what the commute will look like.
Commute: I love public transportation, and I don't own a car at the moment. If possible, I'd prefer to keep doing the carshare thing for errands, and ideally I'd like to be able to take the L to work. Will I be able to get from the campus to a stop without walking through dangerous areas? Is the L generally pretty safe? What about at night, if I get stuck at work after dark or want to go to an event on campus in the evening — are taxis a better idea for those situations? Is parking available on campus if I do need to do the car thing?