A tiny, five-block hamlet located on the northern tip of the Beverly neighborhood, Beverly View is a middle-class community known as much for its ethnic diversity as it is for its hilly terrain and classic Chicago homes. Frame houses with small front yards and rear garages line the blocks, creating a residential enclave cradled by acres of park space and the extensive grounds of the Beverly Country Club golf course.
Beverly View Facts
Location: about 13 miles southwest of the Loop
Bordering Neighborhoods: Beverly, Gresham, Wrightwood
Boundaries: 79th Street to the north, Metra Electric Rock Island District line to the east, 81st Place to the south and Western Avenue to the west
Then and Now
Beverly View is located on the panhandle of Beverly neighborhood, sandwiched between the communities of Wrightwood and Gresham. Still, Beverly View is completely disconnected from other surrounding areas because the entire subdivision is self-contained within a circular layout where nearly every street in the neighborhood dead-ends at the outermost edge into a residential alley, separated from the bordering railroad tracks by a thicket of trees and brush.
Before it was settled, the whole Beverly neighborhood was known as Blue Island because the recession of glaciers had left a small lake in the area thousands of years earlier, and Beverly had indeed been an island. (Blue Island now refers to a suburb about two miles south of Beverly which is obviously no longer an island.) After settlement began, but before it was incorporated into the city, the area that now includes Beverly and Beverly View were commonly known as Beverly Hills. Residents often claim that the city in Los Angeles County was named after the Beverly neighborhood in Chicago, but we think it’s more likely that both were named after the town in Massachusetts near Boston.
From the 1890s until the First World War, Beverly View and the surrounding neighborhoods were populated mostly by European immigrants. Several waves of Europeans settled in Beverly until 1920, when a shift occurred, and the existing residents spread northward as new waves of Irish and African American migrants began to inhabit the area. Sometime between 1910 and 1920 a streetcar began operating along 79th Street from Western Avenue to the lakefront, linking Beverly View to the 79th Street beaches. Another streetcar was added in 1931 to Western Avenue south of 79th Street, connecting residents to the rest of the city. Western Avenue, the main street in Beverly View, is the longest street in Chicago, and at the peak of streetcar service cars ran from 111th Street to Howard Street on the city’s north side. However, by 1950, both streetcars had been discontinued and converted to bus routes.
In the following decades, thousands of residents were attracted to Beverly View from high-density centrally-located southern neighborhoods like Bridgeport and Englewood and residential building surged. The neighborhood developed into a working-class enclave with every appeal of the suburbs, but also with good accessibility to the rest of the city. Since the 1950s, Beverly and neighboring Wrightwood have been some of the most ethnically diverse regions in Chicago. And nowadays, Beverly and Beverly View are some of the most diverse neighborhoods in the country.
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Beverly View Real Estate
While Beverly is known for its large homes and good-size lots, properties in Beverly View are more similar to those in neighboring Ashburn, slightly smaller and more uniform in style. Most of the residences in Beverly View are one- and two-story frame houses, raised ranches, or redbrick bungalows. Almost every home has a garage and a small backyard. Even though several dwellings on a single block can be similar is design, there is enough variety in exterior accents and building material that each home is distinctive and charming in its own way.
Leafy trees rise above rooflines shading the well-maintained sidewalks that edge the quiet streets throughout this tiny residential enclave. While it is easy to find examples of classic, narrow ranch-style Chicago homes with detached back garages and skinny lots in Beverly View, modern architectural layouts with attached garages and wider yards are less common. There are no condominiums or multi-unit residential buildings to speak of around here, but single-family dwellings are plentiful and range in price from $100,000 to $230,000.
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Like most of the surrounding area, it’s pretty easy to get around Beverly View, as the subdivision is purely residential and is disconnected from the busy thoroughfares nearby. Most of the streets in the neighborhood end at a small alleyway that encircles the neighborhood since the Rock Island Railroad tracks cradle Beverly View to the south and east. While walking from one end of Beverly View to the other would only take a few minutes, if you plan to head out to other destinations, you’re probably going to want to drive.
Western Avenue and 87th Street are the major roads in the area, and it’s fairly simple to get over to the Dan Ryan Expressway (I-90/94) by heading east on 87th Street. The Dan Ryan takes you downtown in a jiff, if there isn’t any traffic, that is. During morning and evening rush hours you can count on the highway being backed up in certain parts, so make sure get yourself extra commuting time.
If you take public transportation, the CTA busses will be your best friends in Beverly View. The #49 bus runs north and south on Western Avenue, with the X49 express busses running every 10 minutes during peak hours (these stops every four blocks instead of every two). The #49 bus also connects with the CTA Orange Line train at 49th Street, which runs directly downtown or out to Midway Airport.
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School’s in Session
Because it’s such a small neighborhood, there are no public schools in Beverly View, just one private Catholic academy where residents can send their younger children (kindergarten through fifth grade). Not to worry if you have older kids or are not interested in a religious program, there are several public schools in Beverly and countless others throughout the Chicago area. Find out more at our Chicago Guide Schools page.
Liberty Temple Academy - 2255 W 79th St - (773) 737-8061
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Beverly View neighborhood is just a residential subdivision, so there aren’t the usual amenities within its tight borders to accommodate all the daily necessities. Fear not though, when it comes to the essentials, everything you need is found very nearby in surrounding Beverly, Wrightwood, and Gresham communities.
Chicago Transit Authority - (888) 968-7282
Sometimes it makes more sense to view the city of Chicago as a bunch of separate neighborhoods, especially when it comes to real estate. Whether you are in the market for a loft, condo, townhome, or house, it is just as important to inspect the surrounding area as it is to inspect the home’s foundation. Beverly View is just one Chicago community with an abundance of residential properties, and a life all its own. From where you send your kids to school to where you dine at night, the information we provide is an essential piece of the puzzle when you’re trying to decide whether or not to buy that beautiful loft or adorable house in Beverly View.
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