The Lady I rescued couldn’t wait to take Taffy and me (well maybe not her) out on our next walk to discover our northwest side of Chicago neighborhood, Portage Park. A week ago we did our first walk of the year so the Lady wants to really start covering some territory now, before it gets too hot.
We headed towards our location from last week, the southwest corner of Portage Park, to walk the streets we missed. We left with half a plan, the rest the Lady thought she’d figure it out as we went. We parked on W. Newport Avenue (red star on map) and headed east. We don’t always find our House of the Day first, but when you park right in front of it, you can’t pass it up.
This house stands out among the the cute Queen Anne’s and brick bungalows. The Lady thinks it’s Italian because it reminds her of some houses in our neighborhood that don’t look anything like the rest and the owner told her one time it was Italian Renaissance. So you have German, Polish, Irish and now Italian craftsman building houses next to each other a hundred years ago. The house is empty with a building permit taped in the front window which means someone is restoring the house, or flipping it.
This southwest corner of Portage Park is one of the prettiest areas we’ve seen so far, other than near where we live. We found lots of houses with unique features like this Swiss chalet-like entrance. We aren’t sure if it’s original or not but we like it. There’s even an adorable Queen Anne for sale on Newport that some lucky person will get.
It’s not unusual to find a Queen Anne with a curved stone entrance. What the Lady found unusual is that the first block east of the busy Austin Avenue is the prettiest block, once we passed North Marmora the houses are a mixture of architecture with some framed and a few really bad rehabs and pop-ups, unfortunately. This applies to all the blocks in this area where the better blocks intersect with a busy intersection.
All the houses have their gardens in, the Lady couldn’t resist this pretty garden surrounded by a wrought-iron fence. Ironically, the Lady realized that Taffy will pose for a picture waiting for the treat, where I’m the one that ruins the shot. Yes, we know, the Lady said no Taffy, but that dog knows how to lay a guilt trip about not wanting to be left behind and the Lady falls for it every time.
At North Major we turned left, north to Cornelia Avenue then left, west on Cornelia. Reaching Austin, the Lady only had our walked planned to when we reached the end of Cornelia. Looking at the time we only walked for a half hour and there was no way the Lady wanted to stop now so she came up with the idea to take Austin north to the busy Addison Street.
There is a lot less shade on the commercial streets but the temperatures were still mild and I wasn’t overheated, yet. Luckily this change in plans gave the Lady the chance to take a picture of an amazing house which we drove past on Addison. Again, she thinks this is Italian architecture, looking like no other house around, out of place on a busy street squeezed between apartment buildings and businesses. The original tile roof is intact with patina copper roofing over the imposing front windows.
We walked east on Addison (by the way, a few more miles east on Addison and you’ll be at Wrigley Field, home of the World Champion Chicago Cubs) until our furthest north-south street, North Major. We turned right, south to Eddy Street, which is the last street in this southwest corner to cover. By now I am not happy, it’s hot and even with rests in the shade I keep trying to show the Lady the way to the car.
I didn’t want to head west on Eddy because I knew the car was further south. But the Lady wasn’t listening, she just wanted to walk all the way on Eddy to Austin. Earlier we saw signs reminding people to pick up their dog poop. Well, this house took it a lot further with four signs on it’s parkway, which is city property, and where you are to walk your dogs, not on people’s lawn. The alderman for this area provides the signs for property owners. In our experience it’s around the large apartment buildings where renters don’t respect the neighborhood that we find poop problems, not on a pretty residential street like this.
When we reached Austin I’m hot and tired, and so is the Lady, but we still had two blocks south to walk to Newport to reach our car. The Lady is really glad she pushed us on this walk because we are looking at temperatures in the 90s for the next week or two and aren’t sure if it will be cool enough in the morning to get out or not.
Out statistics for this walk are 1 hour, 5 minutes and just under two miles, a much better pace according to the Lady, not me.
To catch up on any of our walks to discover Portage Park visit the categories in the lower right hand side of our blog and look for #DiscoverPortagePark.