The Curbed Cup, Curbed Chicago's annual Neighborhood of the Year tournament, is kicking off with 16 'hoods, which will square off in a series of one-on-one matchups. Voting for each matchup will close 24 hours after opening. We'll showcase two first round contests per day through the week with results reviewed on Friday. Let the eliminations begin!
Every minute of every day there's someone chanting Logan Square in our ears, but is the hoopla about anything beyond bars and restaurants? It hasn't been a year of construction for Logan, with nary an infill project worth reporting. But rents are rising, many new eateries and cocktail joints are opening or scouting locations, and the internet voyeurs are proclaiming the neighborhood among the nation's hottest. The one development that looms larger than life in Logan Square is the under-construction Bloomingdale Trail, soon to be 2.7 miles of architectural park & rec space. On the downside, whenever it seems like Congress Theater owner Eddie Caranza has his act together for the betterment of Milwaukee Ave and its vacant storefronts, there's a major setback.
Fittingly, one of the other "hottest" nabes in East Village is facing Logan in the first round. It is just one part of the West Town community area, but a distinctive and booming part. 2013's tally gives a few noteworthy development items: the completion of 1611 W Division, that architecturally-stimulating, parking-free rental building at Polonia Triangle. Smaller but still transformative stuff is happening on Chicago Avenue, with the active or pending build-out of vacant lots with condos and apartments. Another proud moment for the peppy 'hood is the almost-finished restoration of the beautiful terra cotta-clad Amber Building on Chicago near Ashland. Plans for the rebuilt space include a collection of architecture/design firms and a possible rooftop restaurant.
·Curbed Cup 2013