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The Gap
Real Estate and Neighborhood Information

The Gap Overview

The Gap is a part of Bronzeville.

As part of south Chicago's rich cultural history, The Gap is a small neighborhood primed for revitalization and development. Close to Lake Michigan and the Loop with convenient transportation options and plenty of affordable housing opportunities, The Gap is a hidden south side gem that is brimming with new construction, in addition to a renewed interest in its classic row houses. A respectable number of restaurants cover all the basic cravings – get a slice from a Chicago-based pizzeria, or order up a Cajun catfish dish with a Midwest twist.  

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There’s not much to The Gap neighborhood—seeing as it covers less than five square blocks of land—but sometimes the quaintness of a small subdivision can bring more beauty and comfort than a larger neighborhood. Such is the case in The Gap. Traditional brick and stone two- and three-story row houses line many of the residential streets in The Gap, with stone stoops leading up from the sidewalks to small porches, some big enough for a chair or two. While most of these elegant homes occupy vintage buildings boasting classic masonry work and attractive limestone accents, a slew of contemporary designs have made an appearance in The Gap giving the neighborhood a boost of modernity and freshness. But whether you prefer the vintage look or something that’s been newly built, homeowners will find that most of these row houses offer renovated interiors with the latest upgrades included refurbished hardwood flooring and granite kitchen countertops.

In general, a row house or detached single-family townhome in The Gap neighborhood starts in the upper $200,000s with a lot of options in the four-hundred thousand dollar range. Of course, if you want to splurge there are plenty of properties listed for between $600,000 and $900,000. With four or five bedrooms and multiple floors, these large Chicago homes provide ample living space for families that want to remain close to the city’s center but need a bit more leg room. Of course, not every homeowner is concerned with having tons of space. Not to worry, The Gap offers plenty of condos situated in a variety of buildings from four-story walkup flats to high-rise units with far-reaching views of the city. Many of the larger condominium complexes in the neighborhood are located along the neighborhoods main thoroughfares, namely Michigan and Indian avenues, King Drive and Calumet Avenue. Typically, the price for a one-bedroom unit hovers in the low to mid $100,000s, adding another bedroom into the mix will bring the price point up to between $160,00 and $330,000. There are some three-bedrooms available for under $300,000 in The Gap, but really you’re probably looking at paying more like four-hundred thousand or more for a place this size.


The Gap History

This tiny, three-block long south side Chicago neighborhood is called The Gap because it lies in the space (or gap) between a pair of high-rise housing developments at 31st and 35th streets. The Gap is part of the larger community area of Douglas. The Douglas neighborhood is named after the 19th century Chicago politician Stephen Douglas, who, in 1852, purchased 70 acres of land between 33rd and 35th streets. After building a mansion for himself near 35th and State streets, Douglas donated much of his land to a Baptist church. During the Civil War, Camp Douglas was built in the area between Cottage Grove Avenue and South Parkway, 31st and 36th streets. The camp was to be used for training Union soldiers. In the later stages of the war, the camp served as a POW camp for captured rebel soldiers, over 4,000 of who died in the camp due to unsanitary conditions. The devastatingly grim history of the grounds was hard to forget, but as the area was developed for residential use, the neighborhood was given a renewed livelihood, and eventually the area’s gruesome past was largely forgotten.

Even in the mid 1800s, Douglas was convenient to many transportation options. A stop on the Illinois Central Railroad, as well as various streetcar lines, made this Chicago neighborhood appealing to many of the city’s wealthier citizens who were drawn to the quick commute to Chicago’s commercial center. At the same time, the area’s close proximity to local industry made Douglas attractive to blue collar workers who began to settle their families in the vicinity as well. The small neighborhood to the north of Douglas, known as the 'Black Belt' for its large African American population, began to expand south into Douglas, and by the close of the 19th century thousands of African Americans were calling Douglas home as well. This population growth continued into the 1920s when Douglas, along with the Bronzeville neighborhood to the south, became known as the center of black cultural life in the city. African American-owned businesses thrived as did the nightlife and Chicago’s south side soon gained a national, if not international, reputation for music with the biggest jazz acts of the day headlining the neighborhood clubs.

Like much of the rest of the country in the 1930s, Douglas was hit hard by the stock market crash and the Great Depression that followed. Businesses went under, public services suffered, housing markets fell, and economic opportunities were scarce. Starting in 1941 with the Ida B. Wells housing project, the newly formed Chicago Housing Authority began constructing public housing to provide for low-income families. Stateway Gardens, the Robert Taylor Homes and others followed. But lack of public funds—or perhaps apathy—these projects lapsed into a state of disrepair and became infiltrated with crime and gang violence.


Today, thanks in part to community organizations such as the Mid-South Planning and Development Commission and the Quad Communities Development Corporation, residents and neighborhood leaders are working with developers in an effort to create and sustain a safe and vibrant mixed-income community in the neighborhoods of North Kenwood, Oakland, Grand Boulevard and Douglas (which includes The Gap). All of the former public housing projects have been demolished and they are currently being replaced with attractive mixed income low-rise housing.

Dream Town Knows The Gap

As Chicago neighborhood experts, Dream Town has successfully sold properties in The Gap. 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 The Gap home. Utilizing state-of-the-art technology, Dream Town drives more sales than any other Chicago brokerage.

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The Sights of The Gap

The Gap Neighborhood Photo
The Gap Neighborhood Photo
The Gap Neighborhood Photo
The Gap Neighborhood Photo

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Schools In The The Gap Area

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

School Type Grade Rating

Drake Elementary School

2710 South Dearborn St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
1

Fuller Elementary School

4214 South Saint Lawrence Ave - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
2

King College Prep High School

4445 South Drexel Boulevard - public

High 9-12
9

Wells Preparatory Elementary Academy

249 East 37th St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
3

National Teachers Elementary Academy

55 West Cermak Road - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
4

Santa Lucia School

3017 South Wells Street - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

St. Jerome School

2801 S Princeton Ave - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

De La Salle Institute

3455 S Wabash Ave - private

High 9-12
NR

Daystar School

1550 S. State Street - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Williams Multiplex Elementary School

2710 South Dearborn St - public

Preschool - Elementary PK-5
NR

Jane Addams High School

1814 S Union Ave - private

High 9-12
NR

Pershing West Elementary Magnet School

3200 South Calumet Ave - public

Elementary - Middle 4-8
NR

Old St. Marys School

1474 S. Michigan Ave - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Holy Angels Catholic School

750 East 40th Street - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Jungman Elementary School

1746 South Miller St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
4

Woodson South Elementary School

4414 South Evans Ave - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
2

Chicago Military Academy High School

3519 South Giles Ave - public

High 9-12
8

Doolittle Elementary School

535 East 35th St - public

Preschool - Middle PK-8
1

St Therese School

247 West 23rd Street - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

Holy Angels Catholic School

750 E. 40th St. - private

Preschool - Middle PK-8
NR

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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