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Curbed Cup 1st round: (2) The Loop vs. (15) Woodlawn

Which neighborhood should advance? Cast your vote now!

Curbed Chicago Flickr pool/Adam Oles

The Curbed Cup, our annual award for the Chicago neighborhood of the year, is kicking off with 16 areas vying for the prestigious (fake) trophy. This week we'll have two matchups per day, and all the results and the full tournament bracket will be reviewed on Friday. Voting for each pairing ends 24 hours after it begins. Let the eliminations commence!

The Loop

Chicago’s central business district, The Loop, is known around the globe for its architectural gems and world-class museums, but it’s also becoming known for being the fast growing neighborhood in Chicago in terms of residential population. What was once a sleepy and quiet area at night has come alive over the last decade as thousands of new condos and rental units have been delivered. High profile openings included the 690-unit Marque at Block 37 apartment tower along State and Randolph and the LondonHouse hotel along the Chicago River. While River North and the West Loop have become the centers of Chicago’s tech boom, The Loop is still leading the charge when it comes to commercial space, and both retail and office space are seeing post-recession record low vacancies.


Curbed Chicago Flickr pool/Eric Allix Rogers

The Woodlawn community is about to receive a major shot in the arm in the form of a half billion dollar (perhaps up to $1 billion) investment from the Obama Foundation. The future Obama Presidential Center is moving forward and will see the construction of a complex designed by world famous husband and wife architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien. The major investment and attraction will not only create new permanent jobs, but it is expected to help spur economic growth and new developments in the South Side community. The Woodlawn neighborhood is underserved and represents what some call an untapped economic opportunity for individual proprietors and other small business owners.