Live in Berwyn
Berwyn, also known as the City of Homes, has an outstanding assortment of high quality homes in distinct architectural styles including bungalows, Victorians, American four-squares, Tudors, and farm-houses – and all for unbeatable prices. Incorporated in 1908, Berwyn’s rich history is evidenced by one of the most significant collections of Chicago-style bungalows in the nation today. Be sure to save the date for the Berwyn Historical Society’s annual Historic Berwyn Bungalow Tour each September.
It’s no secret that the bungalow has played a significant role in the City of Berwyn’s history with the majority built between 1920 and 1930. Today, bungalows comprise 1/3 of the Berwyn’s housing stock. For over a century, the bungalow has provided Berwyn residents with many benefits including homeownership, walkable neighborhoods and convenient access to Chicago. The City of Berwyn continues to encourage its bungalow owners by providing resources to help with the restoration of their homes.
In order to celebrate Berwyn’s beloved bungalows, a state senate resolution designated the first week of May 2012 as Bungalow Appreciation Week in the State of Illinois. Berwyn’s bungalow has also been honored as “Chicagoland’s Greatest Treasure” by American Bungalow magazine, and in 2011, This Old House magazine named Berwyn “Best Neighborhood for Bungalows.”
To mark the occasion, the City of Homes organization and the Berwyn Active Transportation Committee organized the inaugural Berwyn Bikes & Bungalows bike ride event on Saturday, May 5. The family-friendly event began and ended in Proksa Park. A leisurely four-mile bike ride included intermittent stops to discuss the rich history of several bungalows as well as the Berwyn Active Transportation Plan, which aims to improve the city’s walking and biking environment.
The Active Transportation Alliance wrote a recap of the event in its Write of Way blog.
Berwyn is getting greener and healthier. Recently awarded money from the Cook County Department of Public Health through the Model Communities Grant Program, Berwyn is working with the Active Transportation Alliance on a number of healthy community initiatives. These will help Berwyn become more bike- and pedestrian-friendly, making it safer and easier to travel actively without the need for a car. The initiatives will also ensure safe active travel to Berwyn’s primary schools and parks.
To begin this transformation, Berwyn first worked on an Active Transportation Plan. The plan addresses non-motorized travel in the City including biking, walking and public transit use. It will map new walking and biking routes throughout the City, giving people healthier options to live, work and play in Berwyn.
The City is also working to implement ordinances to make the plan more sustainable.
- A Complete Streets Policy will guide future road development decisions by requiring the City to give equal consideration to all forms of transportation – vehicles, mass transit, cyclists and pedestrians – when a road project is proposed.
- A Safe Parks Zone Policy will help make our parks and schools safer by reducing speeds and increasing traffic fines in the areas when children are present. These policies encourage more safe activity for the community’s children.
- School Travel Plans will map safe walking and biking routes to Berwyn’s schools.
To make the community aware of all these efforts, the final piece of the project will be to sign and mark the new routes and zones. Signs will be installed to guide the community to new bike paths, some of which will have actual pavement markings designating them. Signs will also go up around some parks to remind motorists of the new Safe Park Zones.
With an eye on providing easy, safe options to live a healthier life in Berwyn, the City hopes this planning and policy work lays an important foundation for the future. For anyone seeking additional information or looking to comment on the draft plans or policies, please contact Kurtis Pozsgay at 708-788-8100 or follow us on our Facebook page.
The Berwyn Historical Society announced the annual Historic Berwyn’s House Tour, “Bungalows and More” to be held on Sunday, September 23, from 12 noon until 5 pm.
Berwyn, recently named Best Neighborhood for Bungalows by This Old House magazine, boasts one of the largest concentrations of Chicago-style bungalow homes in the nation. Tour-goers will learn the history of each home, while gaining valuable ideas and insight for restoring and maintaining their own vintage homes.