Near North Side, IL
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More About Near North Side, Illinois
The Near North Side is the eighth of Chicago’s 77 community areas. It is the northernmost of the three areas that constitute central Chicago, the others being the Loop and the Near South Side. The community area is located north and east of the Chicago River. To its east is Lake Michigan, and its northern boundary is the early 19th-century city limit of Chicago, North Avenue. In 2020 the Near North Side had 105,481 residents, surpassing Lake View as the largest Chicago community area by population. It is also the most densely populated community area and has the second most skyscrapers, after the Loop. With the exception of Goose Island (which is undergoing development), the Near North Side is known for its extreme affluence, typified by the Gold Coast, Magnificent Mile, Navy Pier, and skyscrapers.
The Near North Side is the oldest part of Chicago. In the 1780s, in what is now the Near North Side, on the northern banks of the Chicago River near today’s Michigan Avenue Bridge, Jean Baptiste Point du Sable built the first known permanent settlement in what was called “Eschecagou.” Today, this is marked by Pioneer Court.
Especially in the vicinity of Rush and Erie streets, the Near North Side was once known as McCormickville; so named because it is here where many branches of the famous McCormick family of mechanical reaper fame built their mansions in the late 1800s and early 1900s.