|Community Area 68 - Englewood|
The intersection of 63rd and Halsted, looking south. The Halsted 'L' station can be seen crossing Halsted in the distance. Kennedy-King College occupies the buildings on the left of the photo. The building on the right burned in 2014.
Location within the city of Chicago
|• Total||3.09 sq mi (8.00 km2)|
|• Density||9,924/sq mi (3,831.8/km2)|
|Time zone||CST (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
|ZIP Codes||part of 60621|
|Source: U.S. Census, Record Information Services|
Englewood is one of the 77 official community areas in Chicago, Illinois, United States. At its peak population in 1960, over 97,000 people lived in its approximately 3 square miles (7.8 km2), but the neighborhood's population has since dropped dramatically. In 2000, it had a population of approximately 40,000 inhabitants, and the 2010 census indicated that its population has further declined to approximately 30,000. Englewood is bordered by Garfield Boulevard to the north, 75th Street to the south, Western Avenue to the west, and State Street to the east. It is located on the southwest side of Chicago.
Before the city of Chicago was established, the area that is now Englewood was largely swampland inhabited by Mascouten Indians. In 1839, the US Government Land Office of Chicago stated that the land was habitable. In the 1850s and 1860s, as Chicago was becoming a city of railroad tracks and economic prosperity, Englewood was just another supporting neighborhood. But in 1871, when the Great Chicago Fire destroyed a large portion of Chicago, residents moved to the outskirts such as Englewood. Englewood's railroad connections to downtown Chicago made it a convenient location, and the neighborhood's population grew rapidly. Englewood Station once served many railroad passengers; in 1889, over 1,000 trains would pass through Englewood every day.
The Englewood community was largely defined by the Englewood Shopping Center at 63rd & Halsted, a large pedestrian mall. The City, social services, and mall management worked with community leaders and groups to integrate the mall with the community. The goal was to make the mall a vital part of the community, and a central part of everyday life. It was the site of numerous community events, parades, outdoor concerts, live radio broadcasts and the like. This was spearheaded by the Englewood Business Men's Association and its director, Richard Drew. Mr. Drew died in 1978, and with his passing the Association lost its community focus. The Center subsequently lost its major anchor tenants, including Sears Roebuck, and became a collection of smaller merchants.
In 1999, Mayor Richard M. Daley announced a $256 million revitalization plan for the area. The keystone of the program is the relocation of Kennedy-King College to the former site of the Englewood Shopping Center. Shortly thereafter the city began an aggressive buyout and relocation program for mall merchants. The campus includes the Washburne Culinary Institute. Groundbreaking for the new, 40-acre (160,000 m2) campus occurred on November 9, 2005, and it opened in 2007.
Digital images of Englewood can be found in Explore Chicago Collections, a digital repository made available by Chicago Collections archives, libraries and other cultural institutions in the city.
In 1960 Englewood had 67,216 black people and 51,583 white people; black people made up about 69% of the residents in Englewood. At the time most black people resided around 63rd Street. At the time the median income of Englewood was $5,579 ($NaN according to inflation).
By 1980 the total population was 62,069, a loss of about 30,000 people in two decades; 99% of the people were black, and the white population was down to 818. Edward McClelland of NBC Chicago stated "Not even ethnic cleansing in the Balkans achieved the levels of turnover that white flight in Chicago did."
Both the Chicago Transit Authority's Red Line and Green Line run through Englewood, as does the Dan Ryan Expressway (I-90 and I-94).
The railroad junction at Englewood, where Metra (the former Rock Island) crosses Norfolk Southern (the former Pennsylvania) has long been a cause of delay. In March 2010 a $133 million reconstruction project was announced which improved operations by replacing the diamond crossing between Metra and NS with an overpass for Metra. The project was completed in 2014.
In popular culture
- Chiraq by Spike Lee is set in Englewood.
- Takin' Place by Cyrus Dowlatshahi was filmed in Englewood.
Englewood, Chicago Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.