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Brainerd
Real Estate and Neighborhood Information

Brainerd Overview

Brainerd is a part of Washington Heights.

Nestled along the eastern border of Chicago's well-known Beverly neighborhood, Brainerd is a largely residential community that carries a proud torch for its Irish-American heritage. Home to one of the area's most vibrant parks, Brainerd is a charming melting pot of history and close communal bonds, which is celebrated every June with the much-anticipated neighborhood picnic. When they're not throwing big community get-togethers, local families go to the park for the wide assortment of activities available to kids and adults alike. Recreational programs, children's sports leagues, day camps, and a lengthy outdoor walking and jogging path are enough to keep this neighborhood full of life, no matter what the time of year.

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European immigrants who were attracted to the area for its railroad jobs originally settled in Brainerd, and much of the housing and architecture still reflect the 1920s and ‘30s era. The residential streets are lined with a melange of traditional Chicago bungalows, brick raised ranches and split-level homes, while other dwellings uphold a more classic Georgian style. And while the majority of housing options in the neighborhood are detached single-family homes, there are some vintage courtyard condominiums and low-rise residential buildings throughout Brainerd that start at $90,000 and go as high as $200,000. Single-family homes in this south side Chicago neighborhood cover a wide span of price ranges. Some one-story homes are listed in the low to mid $100,000s while other Brainerd properties are put on the market for around $225,000.

Low real estate prices tied to the area are attracting a new wave of developers. New residential construction in Brainerd has become a common site as developers are taking advantage of the modest real estate prices and large vacant lots. With the direction things are going, it is likely that modern condo and townhome units will become more commonplace in Brainerd in the coming decades.


Brainerd History

Much of Brainerd’s history is tied to its park, located in the heart of the neighborhood. The area itself is named after one of the five original founders of the Rock Island Railroad line, which runs directly through the Brainerd neighborhood and still services the south side communities of Chicago.

Before Brainerd assumed its own identity, it was grouped into the jurisdiction of the Beverly neighborhood. The streets bordering what we now know as Brainerd were annexed by the City of Chicago in 1890. At the time, 91st Street, which runs directly through the area, was dubbed Brainerd Avenue. When the city reassigned street names with appropriate numbers, the vicinity between Beverly and Eggleston avenues became known as the Brainerd neighborhood. The residents who settled into the quiet streets had labor ties to the railroad or were recent immigrants from Ireland and Germany.

During the 1920s, the Beverly and Brainerd communities grew by nearly 80 percent, thanks to increased immigration. From this torrent of population growth grew the need for Brainerd Park (1246 W. 92nd St, 312-747-6027), which began development in 1932. After five years of financial wrangling, the Chicago Park District finalized purchase on the land in 1938. The initial construction included outdoor athletic facilities and a small fieldhouse. In the 1970s, a larger fieldhouse took the place of the original.

Today, Brainerd’s south side identity it steeped in the blue-collar traditions of the community. Its historic connection to the Rock Island Railroad has shaped its character as a working class community that maintains close ties to its rich heritage. In the past two decades, the area has seen a rise in its African American population; still, its legacy as an former immigrant enclave remains intact.


Dream Town Knows Brainerd

As Chicago neighborhood experts, Dream Town has successfully sold properties in Brainerd. Dream Town holds a well-earned reputation for its impressive sales volume and dedication to personal, attentive service. Benefit from the Dream Town advantage when selling your Brainerd home. Utilizing state-of-the-art technology, Dream Town drives more sales than any other Chicago brokerage.

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8949 South Elizabeth, Chicago IL, 60620 #
Sold For $45,000
8948 South Elizabeth, Chicago IL, 60620 #
Sold For $45,000
8947 South MARSHFIELD, Chicago IL, 60620 #
Sold For $169,500

The Sights of Brainerd

Brainerd Neighborhood Photo
Brainerd Neighborhood Photo
Brainerd Neighborhood Photo
Brainerd Neighborhood Photo
Brainerd Neighborhood Photo
Brainerd Neighborhood Photo

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Schools In The Brainerd Area

See grade levels, address, and scores for schools in the Brainerd area.

School Type Grade Rating

Barnard Elementary Comp Math & Science Center

10354 S Charles St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
4

Kipling Elementary School

9351 South Lowe Ave - public

Elementary - Middle K-8
5

Southeast Elementary School

9800 South Francisco Ave - public

Elementary K-6
6

St Helena Of The Cross

10115 South Parnell Avenue - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Leo Catholic High School

7901 South Sangamon Street - private

High 9-12
NR

St Ethelreda School

8734 South Paulina Street - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Evangelical Christian School

9130 South Vincennes Avenue - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Ridge Academy

2501 West 103rd Street - private

Elementary - Middle 1-8
NR

CICS Longwood

1309 W. 95th Street - charter

Elementary - High 3-12
3

Kingdom Connection Academy

Po Box 201755 - private

Preschool - High PK-12
NR

L L Performing Arts Academy

843 West 103rd Street - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Evergreen Park Esd 124 School District

9400 South Sawyer Ave -

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Cook Elementary School

8150 South Bishop St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
2

Ryder Elementary Math & Sci Spec School

8716 South Wallace St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
2

Jackson M Elementary School

917 West 88th St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
1

St Rita Of Cascia High School

7740 South Western Avenue - private

High 9-12
NR

Lolly-Pop Nursery School & Kindergarten

9308 South Ashland Avenue - private

Elementary K
NR

St. Bernadette School

9311 South Francisco Avenue - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

CICS Ralph Ellison

1817 W. 80th Street - charter

High 9-12
2

Nkrumah Academy Elementary School

8524 South Green St - charter

Elementary K-6
1

School data provided by GreatSchools.School service boundaries are intended to be used as reference only. To verify enrollment eligibility for a property, contact the school directly. GreatSchools Ratings provided by GreatSchools.org.

Surrounding Neighborhoods

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