Neighborhood Description


Austin, first established as a 280-acre subdivision in 1865, has grown into one of Chicago's largest community areas, in both size and population. Originally home to the government seat of the Township of Cicero, Austin became a part of the city in 1899 after "people from other parts of Cicero Township resented the influence and the dominance of Austinites and began an election to have" it annexed into Chicago. Residents of the neighborhood didn't like this, and they fought to maintain an independent identity after annexation. One example of this was the 1929 construction of Austin Town Hall, which was modeled on Philadelphia's Independence Hall.
Aided by the presence of street railways and the Lake Street "L" (now the Green Line), Austin was one of the "best-served commuter areas" in the city by 1920. "Commerce in Austin followed transit lines" and the population exploded. The community had more than 130,000 residents living within its borders by 1930, and the area transformed from a village filled with large frame homes into a densely populated area that featured "brick two-flats, small frame houses, and the ubiquitous brick story-and-a-half bungalow." Austin's "nineteenth-century village" feel is not completely gone, though. The "residential core is still visible in the Midway Park area," and it boasts "stately neoclassical and Queen Anne–style homes, many designed by architect Frederick Schock, as well as several structures by Frank Lloyd Wright and his students." One of Austin's other "crown jewels" is Columbus Park, which was designed by Jens Jensen in 1920, and includes "a lagoon, a golf course, winding paths and an imposing refectory overlooking the lagoon. "

Neighborhood Links


Chicago Park District: Austin


Chicago Public Library: Austin


History of Austin


Resources in Austin


Loretto Hospital

(773) 626-4300

645 South Central Avenue


Post Office


(773) 379-6380

5001 West Division Street


(773) 237-0710

5100 West Grand Avenue


(773) 378-4122

324 South Laramie Avenue



Prosser Career Academy High School

(773) 534-3200

2148 North Long Avenue


North Grand High School
(773) 534-8520

4338 West Wabansia Avenue


Douglass Academy High School
(773) 534-6176

543 North Waller Avenue


Clark Academic Preparatory Magnet High School
(630) 897-6936

1000 Butterfield Road


Kelvyn Park High School
(773) 534-4200

4343 West Wrightwood Avenue


Northwest Middle School

(773) 534-3250

5252 West Palmer Street


Grocery Stores

Tony's Finer Foods

(773) 804-1556

2500 North Central Avenue




800 North Kedzie Avenue #122



(773) 637-1631

2520 North Narragansett Avenue


Morelia Supermarket

(773) 622-0995

4822 West Diversey Avenue


Cermak Produce

(773) 227-4700

4401 West Armitage Avenue


Cool Places to Eat



(773) 261-2316

5412 West Madison Street

Cuisine: Southern


G & N, The King of Breakfast


5100 West North Avenue

Cuisine: Diners



(773) 287-3663

5815 West Madison Street

Cuisine: Fast Food, Vegetarian


Barney’s Pizza

(773) 287-9100

5652 West Chicago Avenue

Cuisine: Pizza


3-D’s Jerk Chicken and Caribbean Food

(773) 637-6518

5317 West North Avenue

Cuisine: Caribbean


Margie’s Beef

(773) 287-6700

1334 North Cicero Avenue

Cuisine: Hot Dogs


Golden Sea Chop Suey

(773) 921-1111

5501 West Division Street

Cuisine: Barbeque