Old Irving is a smaller enclave within the Irving Park neighborhood on Chicago’s northwest side. It is almost entirely residential, referred to by some as a “suburb within the city”, bounded by Montrose Avenue to the north, Pulaski Road to the east, Addison Avenue south and Kostner Avenue to the west.
Classic, historic homes are the mark of Old Irving. Well preserved properties on large (for the city of Chicago) lots. Development of the area began in the 1840s. Old Irving is dedicated to preserving it’s significant history. The Irving Park Historical Society was founded in 1984 with this goal in mind. A Society survey documented hundreds of buildings in use which predate 1894, many dating as far back as the 1870s. Many home built in the 1870′s and 1880′s survive today. Some remain intact while many have been modified or remodeled.
Public amenities, services, civic organizations
The Old Irving Park Association is dedicated to community action, neighborhood preservation and working with local businesses, developers and government.
At the corner of Irving Park Road and Kildare, The Irving Park YMCA provides activities for all ages in the community. More services and amenities are within the encompassing Irving Park neighborhood.
The age and make-up of the historic homes means large, classic and high-priced single family housing with Queen Anne, Victorian, and Italianate homes. A few farmhouses and numerous bungalows are available. There is variety in style and price. Prices range from the high $60s to $2.5 million range with an average of $350,000. Some rental housing is available, mainly in the form of low rise apartment and condo complexes or 2-4 unit buildings.
The CTA Blue Line runs through Old Irving, with stops at Addison, Irving Park/Pulaski, and Montrose. For frequent travelers this means a short 20 minute train ride to O”Hare Airport. Chicago Metra stops at Irving Park Road. I-90/94 crosses the neighborhood with numerous exits.
Shopping, dining, nightlife
The residential emphasis on its historical homes and its small geographic spread means Old Irving has no core of shopping, dining or nightlife. Small local businesses and shops serve the area but Old Irving is not a destination for diversion. That said, pleasant corner bars and taverns, like McNamara’s, can be found. Hidden gem dining spots range from higher-line fare at Sabatinos or five-star barbeque at Smoque.
Carl Schurz High School and Irving Park Middle School and Belding Elementary public schools serve the neighborhood. St Viator Elementary is a private school serving the neighborhood.