Kenwood, Chicago

Kenwood, located on the South Side of Chicago, Illinois, is one of the 77 well-defined Chicago community areas.

Kenwood contains some of the largest homes in the city. According to the City of Chicago historical signs found on streetlights throughout the neighborhood, Kenwood was once one of the most elite neighborhoods in all of Chicago. Famous murderers Leopold and Loeb lived in Kenwood, as did their victim Bobby Franks. It includes two Chicago Landmark districts (Kenwood District and North Kenwood District). The official community areas were defined in the early 20th century and the current meaning of the Hyde Park neighborhood usually includes the area between 47th Street and 51st Street ("E. Hyde Park Blvd.") as a part of Hyde Park, [Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce 2007-2008 Member Directory, Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce, pp. 32-33, 2007.] although this area is officially the south half of the official Kenwood community area. A number of prominent organizations in the area, like the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference, refer to the community as Hyde Park-Kenwood [ [http://www.hydepark.org/ Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference] ] or Hyde Park-South Kenwood. [ [http://meadville.edu/Ab_Comm_Neighborhood.htm Neighborhood] ]

Kenwood is bisected by 47th Street, which marks a dramatic socio-cultural and architectural boundary. North Kenwood suffered significant depopulation and attendant decline of the housing stock and retail base, bottoming out around 1990, although the area has been gradually redeveloping since then. South Kenwood fared this period rather better, escaping middle-class flight in the 1970s due to the efforts of the Kenwood Open House Committee to have the area zoned single-family homes only, halting a trend then underway to apartment and rooming-house conversion. In the real estate boom of the mid-2000s, houses sold for in excess of two million dollars, and long vacant lots were redeveloped with high-end luxury houses.

Madison Park, one of only three remaining private parks in the City of Chicago, is on the southern end of Kenwood between Woodlawn and Dorchester avenues. Two blocks to the east is the Chicago Public Schools' Kenwood Academy.

Kenwood is part of Hyde Park Township that was annexed by the City of Chicago in 1889. Among its most famous structures is the Blackstone Library, built in 1902, that continues to be part of the Chicago Public Library system.

The southeast portion of this neighborhood includes the Indian Village neighborhood, which includes the National Register of Historic Places-designated (NRHP) Narragansett, the Chicago Landmark Powhatan Apartments, and the NRHP site of the former Chicago Beach Hotel that now hosts Regents Park is also in the neighborhood. [cite web |url=http://www.emporis.com/en/wm/zo/?id=100075|title=Indian Village, Chicago|publisher=Emporis|accessdate=2008-07-18] The tallest building in Kenwood is the South Tower of Regents Park.

The recently re-opened Hyde Park Art Center, located on Cornell Ave. just north of 51st Street/E. Hyde Park Blvd., is Chicago's oldest alternative exhibition space, with an on-site school and studio and an extensive outreach program.

Notable residents

Notable Kenwood residents have included:
*Muhammad Ali
*Bill Ayers
*Louis Farrakhan
*Edward Levi
*Elijah Muhammad
*Barack Obama
*Julius Rosenwald

Gallery

Notes

External links

* [http://egov.cityofchicago.org/webportal/COCWebPortal/COC_ATTACH/Community_Areas_KENWOOD.pdf Official City of Chicago Kenwood Community Map]

Geographic Location
Center = Kenwood, Chicago
North = Oakland, Chicago
Northeast = Lake Michigan
South = Hyde Park, Chicago
Southwest = Washington Park, Chicago
West = Grand Boulevard, Chicago


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