Lincoln Square, Chicago

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Lincoln Square
Community area
Community Area 04 - Lincoln Square
The entry gate into Lincoln Square's historical commercial corridor
The entry gate into Lincoln Square's historical commercial corridor
Location within the city of Chicago
Location within the city of Chicago
Coordinates: 41°58.2′N 87°41.4′W / 41.9700°N 87.6900°W / 41.9700; -87.6900Coordinates: 41°58.2′N 87°41.4′W / 41.9700°N 87.6900°W / 41.9700; -87.6900
Country United States
State Illinois
County Cook
City Chicago

40th Ward

47th Ward
 • Total 2.57 sq mi (6.66 km2)
Population (2015)
 • Total 40,761[1]
Demographics 2015[1]
 • White 64.78%
 • Black 3.43%
 • Hispanic 17.62%
 • Asian 10.99%
 • Other 3.17%
Educational Attainment 2015[1]
 • High School Diploma or Higher 89.7%
 • Bachelor's Degree or Higher 58.3%
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP Codes parts of 60625, 60640
Median household income $62,934[1]
Source: U.S. Census, Record Information Services

Lincoln Square, located on the North Side of the city of Chicago, Illinois, is one of 77 well-defined Chicago community areas. Greater Lincoln Square encompasses the smaller neighborhoods of Ravenswood Gardens, Bowmanville, Budlong Woods and Lincoln Square (neighborhood). Although it is sometimes known by these other names the City of Chicago officially designated it as Lincoln Square in 1925. According to the Encyclopedia of Chicago, the conflation of Ravenswood and Lincoln Square is a common mistake — the two are not interchangeable. The boundaries of the original Ravenswood subdivision, drawn in 1869, were Montrose, Lawrence, Clark and Damen.[2]

Back in the 1920s, the University of Chicago divided the city into 77 well-defined "community areas". Ravenswood didn't make the cut as a standalone entity, rather it was folded into Lincoln Square. In short, according to U. of C., Ravenswood is a subset of Lincoln Square.


Conrad Sulzer Regional Library
A band performs at the annual Square Roots Festival held by the Old Town School of Folk Music.
The old Meyer Delicatessen where Gene's Sausage Shop now stands.

In the 1840s, farming was begun in this area by newly arrived German Americans. Two brothers, Lyman and Joseph Budlong arrived in 1857 to start a commercial pickling operation near what is today Lincoln Avenue and Berwyn. They later opened a commercial green house and flower fields to provide flowers for the then new Rosehill Cemetery. In 1925, to honor Abraham Lincoln, the Chicago City Council named the area Lincoln Square, and a prominent statue of the namesake was erected in 1956.[3]

About 44,000 people live in the neighborhood along with over 1,000 small and medium-sized businesses. It is accessible through the Brown Line of the 'L'. The neighborhood is bounded by Bryn Mawr and Peterson Avenues on the north, Montrose Avenue on the south, Ravenswood Avenue on the east and the Chicago River on the west. Its housing stock consists of private residences and small apartment buildings.

The commercial heart of Lincoln Square is located at the intersection of Lawrence, Western and Lincoln Avenues. Lincoln Avenue southeast of this intersection is home to a wide variety of restaurants and shops. Lincoln Square is historically known as a heavily German influenced and populated neighborhood,[4] but now one is just as likely to see shops catering to Thai or Middle Eastern cultures.[citation needed] Still, the neighborhood is home to a number of German businesses, notably the Chicago Brauhaus, Merz Apothecary and Lutz Café & Bakery, and is the home of the Chicago branches of DANK (the German American National Congress) and the Niedersachsen Club. The German-language weekly newspaper Amerika Woche (de) was born in Lincoln Square in 1972, though its original headquarters above the Brauhaus is now only a bureau.

Events such as festivals and live musical performances are frequently held in Lincoln Square. The Apple Fest is a longstanding tradition in Lincoln Square that brings the community together to celebrate the beginning of fall. Dozens of vendors participate in the event each year selling autumn-themed crafts and apple-themed treats, such as fresh baked apple pies, bushels of apples, hot apple cider and apple pizza.[5] The Square Roots Festival, which is held every summer, celebrates Lincoln Square's history in music and German culture with live performances from local musicians and craft beer from local breweries.[6]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1930 46,419
1940 47,179 1.6%
1950 47,298 0.3%
1960 43,877 −7.2%
1970 47,831 9.0%
1980 43,954 −8.1%
1990 44,891 2.1%
2000 44,557 −0.7%
2010 39,493 −11.4%
Est. 2015 40,761 3.2%


  • Bowmanville
  • Budlong Woods
  • Lincoln Square
  • Lincoln Square North
  • Ravenswood
  • Ravenswood Gardens


The Lincoln Square neighborhood encompasses several Chicago City Council Wards, including the 40th and the 47th Wards. The 40th Ward is represented by Patrick O'Connor, who has held the post since 1983. The 47th Ward is represented by Ameya Pawar, who is running as a Democrat for the Illinois gubernatorial election, 2018.

Points of interest[edit]



Chicago Public Schools operates public schools.[8] Many of these schools have benefited from GROW47,[9] an initiative started by Alderman Ameya Pawar, which aims to improve funding for local public schools.

School Grades No. of students[10] CPS rating[11] School type[12]
Budlong Elementary School[13] PK, K–8 778 1+ Neighborhood
Chappell Elementary School[14] PK, K–8 601 1+ World Language Magnet Cluster (Spanish)
Jamieson Elementary School[15] PK, K–8 879 1+ Neighborhood
McPherson Elementary School[16] PK, K–8 737 1 Neighborhood
Waters Elementary School[17] K–8 634 1+ Fine Arts Magnet Cluster
Amundsen High School 9–12 1,120 1 International Baccalaureate (IB)
Mather High School 9–12 1,432 1 Neighborhood

Amundsen High School is the designated CPS high school for most of the community area, while a small section is zoned to Mather High School.[18]

Other private or parochial schools:

  • Adler Schools
  • Lycée Français de Chicago/The French International School
  • North Park Elementary School
  • North Shore Junior Academy
  • Pilgrim Lutheran
  • Queen of Angels Elementary School
  • St. Hilary's Elementary School
  • St. Mathias School
  • Waldorf School


Lincoln Square contains several parks which are maintained by the Chicago Park District.

  • Winnemac Park[19] covers more than 40 acres at the corner of Damen and Foster. The park contains the campuses of Amundsen High School, Chappell Elementary, and the Jorndt Field athletic complex. The park features natural prairie plants, multiple baseball fields, a soccer field, and a playground. The high school also includes a swimming pool, run by the Chicago Park District, that is open to the public during limited times.
  • Welles Park[20] covers 15 acres and sits at the corner of Lincoln and Montrose Avenues, across from the Conrad Sulzer Regional Library. It contains a community center, including a pool, gym, and fitness center. A gazebo stands at the center of the park where concerts are held during the summer. The playground in the northwest corner has swings, climbing equipment and a small splash-pad. There are also several baseball fields, tennis courts and courts to play horseshoes. The park recently won a grant to install a nature area in the southwest corner of the park.
  • Jacob Park[21] is a small playlot located at Virginia and Leland Avenues, right next to the Chicago River. It features a large sandbox, which neighbors have stocked with trucks and toys. The Chicago "L" runs along the southern edge of the park, to the delight of children and adults.
  • River Park[22] is located along the Chicago River, south of Foster Ave and west of Fransisco Ave. The park includes a community center, an outdoor pool, and a popular splash pad. The park is also the start of the North Shore Channel Trail,[23] which continues 6.7 miles through the Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park[24] and up to Evanston.
  • Vogle Playlot[25] is tucked in the corner of Lawrence and Hoyne Avenues. It contains a newly renovated playground and swing-set.
  • Gross Park[26] is a small park located at the corner of Lawrence and Washtenaw, near the Harvest Time grocery store. It contains several basketball courts, a small soccer field, and an ADA-accessible soft-surface playground.
  • Sunken Gardens Park[27] is a small park that sits along the Chicago River at the corner of Virginia and Sunnyside Avenues. It contains a small grassy space and a few benches.

Public art[edit]

  • Berlin Wall Monument (Western Avenue Brown Line Station), 2008
  • Lincoln/Leland Mural (Lincoln Quality Meat Market), 2007
  • Greater Rockwell Mural (Beans and Bagels), 2005
  • Lincoln/Sunnyside Mural, 1997
  • The Maypole (Leland and Lincoln), 1999
  • Giddings Square Fountain, 1999
  • Lombard Lamp (Giddings Square), 1979
  • The Chicago Lincoln statue (Corner of Western, Lawrence and Lincoln), 1956
  • The Lincoln Square Mural (Lincoln Square Athletic Club), 1991



Many families with young children live in Lincoln Square. The neighborhood has a variety of daycare options, including centers and in-home care.

The following are center-based daycares and pre-schools:

Here are some in-home care locations.

Breweries and distilleries[edit]

Lincoln Square/Ravenswood is sometimes called "Malt Row" due to the high number of breweries and distilleries in the area.[38] They include:

Bicycle shops[edit]

Bicycling Magazine named Chicago the best city for biking in 2016.[39] A number of cycling teams and clubs leave from the area, including Half Acre Cycling and Turin. Neighborhood bike shops include:

  • Turin (near Damen Brown Line Stop)
  • On The Route (near Lawrence and Western)


The following events occur within the neighborhood on an annual basis.

  • Ravenswood Run 5K
  • May Fest
  • Lincoln Square Summer Concert Series
  • Square Roots
  • Lincoln Square Poetry Fest
  • German-American Fest
  • Lincoln Square Fall Apple Fest
  • Friends of the Craft Beer Festival[40]
  • Friends of the Grape Wine Festival
  • Christmas Tree Lighting in the Square

Bordering community areas[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Community Data Snapshot - Lincoln Square" (PDF). MetroPulse. Retrieved December 1, 2017. 
  2. ^ "Lincoln Square". Retrieved June 22, 2017. 
  3. ^ Zangs, Mary (2014). The Chicago 77. Charleston, SC: History Press. p. 26. ISBN 9781626196124. 
  4. ^ McKeough, Kevin. "A Guide to Lincoln Square". Chicago Magazine. Retrieved July 16, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Apple Fest - Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce, IL". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Square Roots Festival - Lincoln Square, Chicago - About Square Roots". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  7. ^ Paral, Rob. "Chicago Community Areas Historical Data". Chicago Community Areas Historical Data. Archived from the original on 18 March 2013. Retrieved August 30, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Lincoln Square" (map). City of Chicago. Retrieved on December 24, 2016.
  9. ^ "GROW47 School Initiative -". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  10. ^ "About Our Schools". Chicago Public Schools. Retrieved June 29, 2017. 
  11. ^ "School Quality Rating Policy". Chicago Public Schools. Retrieved June 29, 2017. 
  12. ^ "Elementary School Types". Chicago Public Schools. Retrieved June 29, 2017. 
  13. ^ "BudlongElementarySchool". BudlongElementarySchool. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  14. ^ "Eliza Chappell Elementary School". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  15. ^ "Jamieson Elementary School". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  16. ^ "McPherson Elementary School". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  17. ^ "Waters Elementary". Waters Elementary. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  18. ^ "HS North/Near North". Chicago Public Schools. 2013. Retrieved on September 30, 2016.
  19. ^ District, Chicago Park. "Winnemac Park - Chicago Park District". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  20. ^ Welles Park
  21. ^ District, Chicago Park. "Jacob Park - Chicago Park District". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  22. ^ District, Chicago Park. "River Park - Chicago Park District". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  23. ^ "North Shore Channel Trail - Illinois Trails -". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  24. ^ "Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park". Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  25. ^ District, Chicago Park. "Vogle Playlot Park - Chicago Park District". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  26. ^ District, Chicago Park. "Gross Park - Chicago Park District". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  27. ^ District, Chicago Park. "Sunken Gardens Park - Chicago Park District". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  28. ^ "Amy's Candy Bar - 4704 N Damen Avenue, Chicago, IL". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  29. ^ "Your Independent Book Store in Lincoln Square! - The Book Cellar". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  30. ^ Block, The Chopping. "Corporate Events and Cooking Classes Chicago - The Chopping Block". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  31. ^ "Home - Davis Theater". Davis Theater. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  32. ^ "Café Selmarie". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  33. ^ "Home - Gideon Welles in Chicago, IL - Food & Drink". Gideon Welles. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  34. ^ Design, Swartwerk Media. "Home - Merz Apothecary - Chicago". Merz Apothecary - Chicago. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  35. ^ "Rockwell's". Rockwell's. Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  36. ^ "Buy Spices, Seasonings and Herbs Online - Savory Spice". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  37. ^ "Timeless Toys". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 
  38. ^ "Welcome to Malt Row, Chicago". Malt Row Chicago. Retrieved June 22, 2017. 
  39. ^ "The 50 Best Bike Cities of 2016". Bicycling. September 19, 2016. Retrieved June 22, 2017. 
  40. ^ "Friends of the Craft". Retrieved November 1, 2017. 

External links[edit]