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Nestled just outside the southwest edge of Chicago, Oak Lawn holds a place as one of Chicago's most charming suburbs. The area's residential population is primarily made up of commuters who take advantage of the village's location and amenities.
With major arteries connecting Oak Lawn to metro Chicago and other outlying areas, the neighborhood puts residents close to the hustle and bustle of city life while still maintaining a close-knit-community feel. Retailers and other commercial businesses make up approximately one-third of the village, offering residents and visitors alike places to shop, dine and explore. The area's close proximity to Midway Airport makes long-distance travel convenient. Oak Lawn remains attractive to a wide range of residents, including young professionals, families and retirees.
As of August 2017, the average apartment rent in Oak Lawn, IL is $496 for a studio, $830 for one bedroom, $997 for two bedrooms, and $1,101 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in Oak Lawn has increased by 1.5% in the past year.
Diners need not worry about finding exciting cuisine within Oak Lawn's boundaries; the village houses numerous highly rated restaurants from pizza and hot dogs to fine dining.
Phil's Pizza has served the Oak Lawn community since 1977 and rates high on the list of must-visit restaurants in the area. With an impressive list of toppings to choose from, Phil's suits the tastes of everyone in your group. For something a little spicy, order The Q, Phil's BBQ chicken pizza with hot giardiniera included in the toppings. Veggie lovers revel at the Garden Delight, topped with spinach, tomato, garlic and onion. If pizza doesn't suit your taste buds, Phil's also offers a long menu of appetizers you don't see on many pizza shop menus, including sandwiches, full dinner options and pastas.
For breakfast or brunch, you can't beat Stacked. Patrons love the hearty portions of French toast, pancakes and other old-fashioned breakfast foods. Different varieties of classic breakfast foods line the menu, including parfait French toast, which serves granola-rolled French toast with Greek yogurt, berries and honey. Whether you want to try a new take on an old favorite or would rather fill your belly with more traditional breakfast and brunch foods, Stacked features a menu to please everyone.
Oak Lawn's bar scene serves the local residents well with a little something for everyone, including sports pubs, dive bars and friendly watering holes. BJ McMahon's, affectionately known as just "BJ's," serves American fare with a healthy selection of beers and liquors behind the counter. During summer and autumn, the beer garden at BJ's entertains guests with televisions, a fountain and heat lamps for a fresh-air experience.
The first settlers to the area came in the mid-1800s and were enamored of Stony Creek, the small stream that ran through a dense grove of black oaks, hence the name of the first community, Black Oak. The village's name remained Black Oaks and/or Black Oak Grove until later in the century when it became Oak Lawn. By the 1880s, the Wabash Railroad connected Oak Lawn to Chicago, and the first housing development sprung up near the train station.
Oak Lawn became incorporated in 1909; 300 residents lived in the village at this time. During the middle of the 20th century, Oak Lawn saw its population increase from 8,751 residents in 1950 to 60,305 residents in the 70s as more and more people saw the appeal of suburbs as opposed to city life.
In 1967, Oak Lawn saw a devastating tornado sweep through the community, killing 37 people and damaging or completely destroying 900 buildings in its wake.
The Children's Museum in Oak Lawn proudly serves community residents and visitors alike. With exhibits that channel creativity, this museum ranks high on things to do in the area. Exhibits include Dream a Dream Theatre, which offers the opportunity for children to tap into their imaginations with the use of costumes, puppets and more. The Treemendous Tunes Treehouse features several levels, including an underneath tunnel, rock ramp and steps.
Festivals create an instant feeling of community, and Oak Lawn's Fall on the Green festival incorporates fall favorites into a community-friendly event. Held on the Village Green, this festival features free attendance and even free parking and shuttle buses. Food vendors, thrill rides and live music attract people from all over to this autumn tradition.
Residents have several commuting options in and around the Oak Lawn area, including Interstates 55 and 294, which run through the neighborhood. Other interstates are close by, giving residents quick access to Chicago's metro area and other neighborhoods.
Public transportation options also abound in Oak Lawn, including Pace buses and Metra trains. These options connect commuters to various CTA train and bus lines and different destinations throughout the area. Hailing a cab or using Uber gives patrons the chance to quickly and safely arrive at different venues throughout the village and city.
Walk Score rates Oak Lawn as somewhat walkable, with several errands being within walking distance to residents. Parking garages and street parking provide a safe spot to store your vehicle while you enjoy the shopping, dining and entertainment of the village; most major venues and destinations have parking lots.
Oak Lawn's cost of living is just over the national average and under Chicago's average; the cost of living index comes in at 104.8 for Oak Lawn and 107.1 for Chicago, while the U.S. average is 100. In 2012, the median gross rent for Oak Lawn was $931 per month, which was slightly higher than Chicago's median gross rent of $920 per month.
Oak Lawn's primary retail and commercial businesses line 95th Street, although other areas also house retail, dining and entertainment options. Residents enjoy access to specialty stores galore, including bridal shops, flower shops and more.
The Oak Lawn Farmers' Market serves area residents from the beginning of June through the middle of October at the junction of Dumke Drive and 52nd Avenue. In addition to fresh fruits and veggies, vendors sell dips, jams, cheeses, coffees, teas, breads, spices and more. Boutique-style vendors make and sell soaps, clothing, arts and crafts, in addition to dog biscuits, flowers and shrubs for the home.
For everyday grocery shopping, residents enjoy Freshline Foods, Fresh Pick Market, Sunrise Oriental Store and other specialty supermarkets.
Over 300 acres of parks, recreational facilities and open land serve the residents of Oak Lawn and the surrounding area. Amenities include walking paths, picnic areas, tennis courts, water-themed parks, fitness centers and an indoor ice arena. Hit the links at Stony Creek Golf Course, which also has an on-site restaurant and banquet facility. The natural wetland refuge presents wildlife-viewing opportunities and the ability to connect with nature while close to suburban life.
The Oak Lawn Park District features numerous activities and events throughout the year, giving families and residents the chance to enjoy indoor and outdoor activities for free or minimal cost. Youth camps provide a safe place for fun and socializing during the summer, while winter activities include exercising at the community pavilion. The indoor ice arena offers hockey for all ages and open skates.
Apartments for Rent Under $900 in Oak Lawn, IL
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