427 Roslyn – Lovely Historic Home in Lincoln Park

427 W Roslyn closed this week for $ 1,300,000.  Built in 1894, this will be the fifth owner to enjoy this fantastic Chicago historic landmark property.  Originally listed for $ 1,695,000, the home was on the market for 115 days.


This Queen Anne home is in the Chicago landmark district called Arlington and Roslyn Place district which includes homes on the 400 block of these streets between Clark and Lakeview.  These homes were built between 1894 and 1910 and the area was named an historic district in 1989.



For more information on this or other Chicago Historic Property, contact Anne Rossley.

Thom Greene show at Edgewater Historical Society

Unbuilt Projects and Fantasy Architecture

This weekend, Edgewater Historical Society Museum is hosting Thom Greene’s collection of designs, sketches, and renderings. The exhibition will run from April 24 until June 6, 2009. The first half of the collection, created over the past 20 years, consists of unbuilt designs and concepts for various sites within the Edgewater and Chicago area that have not been realized.  “Fantasy Architecture”, the second part of the exhibit, covers 31 years of intriguing creations ranging from high-rise works of imagination to highly stylized architectural oddities. The main thread that ties these two diverse bodies of work together is Thom Greene’s compelling rendering skills, practical sensibility, artistic style, and flare for color and form.Thom Greene Unbuilt Projects and Fantasy Architecture

Thom Greene, principal at Greene & Proppe Design, has been instrumental in preserving and rehabbing Chicago historic property in Edgewater’s Lakewood Balmoral and Andersonville neighborhoods, as well as throughout Chicago.

I have worked with Thom and his firm in several capacities over the years, including the exterior renovation of our 1908 American Foursquare.  It has been a pleasure to work with him — he has an incredible eye for design and color (I envy his talent!).  I am looking forward to seeing the show.

The Edgewater Historical Society and Museum is located in the renovated 1925 fire station at 5358 N. Ashland Avenue in Chicago. They are open Saturdays, 1:00 – 4:00 pm, and can be contacted at (773) 506-4849.

Luxury Bungalow in West Andersonville

For those who love historic Chicago property, this west Andersonville (Edgewater) bungalow is a delight.  It’s rehabbed with a lovely kitchen and baths.  The historic home’s woodwork and stained glass windows are sensational.  There’s a side drive and lovely brick back patio.


1718 W Gregory

$ 1,400,000

I don’t often see bungalows in such a great condition, nor do I often see such fabulous woodwork.  If you love historic Chicago homes, I recommend you consider this!!!

Lakewood Balmoral — A Great Chicago Neighborhood

Lakewood Balmoral is one of Chicago’s best kept secrets!


Between Foster and Bryn Mawr you will find 3 incredible streets — Magnolia, Lakewood, and Wayne . Their close proximity to Lake Shore Drive make getting to the Magnificent Mile a quick 10-15 minutes.  Access to the northern suburbs is a breeze via Sheridan Road, Ridge, or Peterson to Lincoln Avenue.   The red line, 2 blocks east at Berwyn and Bryn Mawr, and the 146 Express bus at Foster makes for a quick bus ride to Michigan Avenue and the city.  And of course, you’re near the Chicago lakefront and the running/riding trails.

Residential Oasis

lakewood balmoral neighborhood wayne avenue

These streets boast oversized lots — 1 1/2 to 2 lots wide, and the stately homes were designed to utilize this space.  Without the dense housing of courtyard and midrise multi-unit buildings, guest parking on the street is a breeze!  It would be rare for you to park more than 3 houses away from the home you’re visiting.

Historic District

These streets were awarded the historic district designation in 1998, and therefore owners who spend 25 % of the assessed value (note — this is NOT market value!) in qualified rehab expenditures can obtain a freeze on property taxes for 8 years.  This incentive has encouraged residents to restore their homes, thereby enhancing the beauty and increasing the value of homes in the neighborhood.


Residents enjoy their neighbors.  Block parties involve everyone, and more than just the fire truck and bouncer are planned.  Twice, the 5400 Lakewood block residents created and built miniature golf courses for all to enjoy.  Halloween is a special event, where homes are decorated, and residents hand out between 800 and 1200 pieces of candy, depending on weather.  The annual Fall Festival in October is a favorite, and mark your calendar for the 2nd Saturday in September  for the greatest yard sale ever!


Wayne Avenue

Wayne Avenue

The Lakewood Balmoral Residents Council is a dynamic force for keeping residents involved in their community and creating the warm environment that neighbors enjoy.   The Edgewater Community Council and Care for Real make a significant contribution to members of the Edgewater Community.  I personally felt touched on 9/11, when a spontaneous gathering of neighbors grieved together and commemorated the lives of those who perished in the planes and towers during that incredible tragedy.


New and exciting restaurants and shops open all the time on Andersonville’s Clark Street.  This list represents my favorites, but there are many more great places to see…

Lakewood Avenue




Do I have your attention?  With homes on extra wide lots, believe it or not — last year, homes sold between $ 530,000 and $ 1,937,000. Today there are single family homes for sale between $ 739,000 and $ 1,999,000.

For details on homes currently for sale or information on how you can save on your property taxes by updating your historic property, contact me today!

Illinois Appellate Court overturns the Chicago landmark property ordinance

An Illinois Appellate Court overturned the Chicago’s landmark property ordinance, which protects the 259 individual properties and 50 landmark historic districts from demolition or alteration.  Since 1968, the Commission on Chicago Landmarks has been responsible for protecting Chicago’s historic properties.

Arlington - Deming Historic District

Arlington - Deming Historic District

Judge James Fitzgerald Smith was quoted, saying “We believe that the terms ‘value,’ ‘important,’ ‘significant,’ and ‘unique’ are vague, ambiguous, and overly broad.” The ruling directly affects the Arlington-Deming District in Lincoln Park and the East Village District, according to Crain’s reporter, Thomas A. Corfman
The balance between progress/development and historic preservation is difficult to maintain:
Landmark designations can restrict an owner’s right to make certain improvements, and with the inability to use a property to its highest and best use, an owner’s opportunity to maximize property value is potentially denied.
On the other hand, maintaining and preserving the historic significance of a property enhances its value in the long run.  This is especially true when several properties in a district maintain the look and feel of when they were built.  They are said to have “conformity”, another tenet of real estate value.
These arguments are part of the fabric of Chicago.  Last year, several mansions in the Edgewater neighborhood were nominated for landmark designation by the Edgewater Historical Society.  These nominations were not supported by all this historic homeowners.  In the end, the mansions did not receive the historic designation.  While property owners’ rights are critical to our freedom, it’s also the duty of groups such as EHS to encourage and create incentives for maintaining the historically significant architecture which makes our city so great.

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