Bedford Park Real Estate
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Bedford Park is a highly industrialized village situated just outside Chicago's city limits. It is tucked between the Chicago neighborhood of Clearing and the Illinois suburb of Bridgeview. Ninety percent of Bedford Park's six square miles of land is occupied by industry and corporate parks. All in all, 380 companies have offices/locations in Bedford Park. That leaves little room for residential neighborhoods, which house a population totaling just 533 people (as of 2008).
The residential part of Bedford Park was originally established as a housing development for employees of the large corporations that set up shop in the vicinity. The first homes were built to accommodate workers of Corn Products Refining Company, whose president was E.T. Bedford (hence the name of the village). Corn Products was founded at the beginning of the twentieth century and is now one of the biggest corn refineries in the whole world. A hundred years after its initial construction, the Bedford Park plant remains the company's largest refining facility.
In addition to manufacturing sites, commercial business and hotel chains popped up in Bedford Park over the decades. The corporate corridor helps generate revenue for the local economy and softens the area's factory-heavy landscape. A handful of major inns and motels in Bedford Park feed off of the proximity to Chicago's Midway airport, which is just north of the village's easternmost section. Popular lodging brands such as the Hilton, Hampton Inn, Residence Inn, Marriott, and Extended Stay America are joined by smaller mom-and-pop places like the Bedford House, a corporate rental property.
Bedford Park's sense of community was cultivated by the employee/residents who lived and worked in the area. Over time, public and municipal services evolved and residents endeavored to make a real home for themselves. The village was incorporated in 1940 and is part of Cook County. Similar to many of Chicago's neighborhoods, Bedford Park inhabitants have a strong percentage of Irish, German and Polish heritage.
The Bedford Park District operates roughly 34 acres of parkland and recreational facilities. The main portion of the grounds is nestled among Bedford Park's residential streets, between 66th Place, South Archer Road and Suburban Lane. There are some lovely picnic areas, walking trails and a bike route, plus several ornamental parks and a fish pond. Young children will enjoy the Lily Pad Splash Park and playground equipment, while adults and older kids may prefer to play on the baseball and softball fields or use the Swanson Gymnasium.
The Park District coordinates everything from youth athletic programs and senior activities to club groups and holiday events. The community center building has an auditorium, executive board room, early childhood playroom, ceramics studio and a couple party/meeting rooms. It provides an excellent social gathering spot and allows residents to get involved with other members of the tight-knit hometown community.
There are limited real estate opportunities in Bedford Park, simply due to the fact the land is mostly inhabited by long-established manufacturing grounds, railroad yards and other facilities related to the area's industrial livelihood. As of the 2000 census, only 218 housing units were counted in the entire village.
The housing market is dominated by detached single-family homes, which include raised ranches, split-levels and two-story houses. Bedford Park real estate is relatively affordable and offers mostly three-bedroom abodes built in the last 50 to 60 years. However, there are some early-twentieth century residences that have since been remodeled to incorporate modern-day luxuries.
The neighborhood streets of Bedford Park are quiet and peaceful, far enough away from the hubbub of surrounding industry. Most lots have green grass yards and detached garages with back alley entrances or street-front attached garages. Mature trees and sidewalks line the blocks, which is basically a mini-subdivision off South Archer Road on the village's western perimeter.
The village of Bedford Park is surrounded by several major transportation options, including one of Chicago's main airfields. Midway International Airport is conveniently located at the northern edge of the community's east side. It makes for a quick trip out of town whenever Bedford Park residents want to travel. The village also has a sprawling train yard that services its robust industrial business. Commuters can also catch a train into downtown Chicago that only takes about 25 minutes. For motorists, having two highways close by is a big perk. Both the Stevenson Expressway (I-55) and Tri-State Tollway (I-290) are just minutes away. A car ride to the Loop generally takes a half hour or so.