Berwyn’s rich history is reflected in one of the most significant collections of Chicago-style bungalows in the nation today.
BERWYN’S HISTORical bungalows
Berwyn, also known as the City of Homes, is far from your average cookie cutter suburb. When you think Berwyn, bungalows most likely come to mind. Yes, Berwyn’s rich history is reflected in one of the most significant collections of Chicago-style bungalows in the nation today. But it may surprise you just how much variety there is in Berwyn’s affordable housing stock–there’s a reason why Berwyn is known as the City of Homes, after all. Ranging from Victorians and Tudor Revivals to Workman’s Cottages and American Foursquares, and of course bungalows, your dream home awaits you. For first time homebuyers or those looking to relocate, Berwyn’s rich, affordable housing stock gives you plenty to choose from.
Not only does Berwyn have an eclectic mix of houses, Berwyn is within arms reach of downtown Chicago, Oak Park, Forest Park, Riverside, La Grange, and Brookfield. With convenient access to nearly everything there is to offer in Chicagoland, from dining and entertainment to culture, we’re positive that you’ll find everything you need right here in Berwyn and you won’t want to leave. It’s the perfect place for those who commute by public transportation or on foot, with a BNSF Metra line with three stops within Berwyn’s Depot District, Pace bus routes, and everything you need is just a short walk down the street.
City of Homes
Berwyn, also known as the City of Homes, is far from your average cookie cutter suburb. When you think Berwyn, bungalows most likely come to mind. Yes, Berwyn’s rich history is reflected in one of the most significant collections of Chicago-style bungalows in the nation today. But it may surprise you just how much variety there is in Berwyn’s charming and affordable housing stock–there’s a reason why Berwyn is known as the City of Homes, after all!
You have DEFINITELY seen Queen Anne Victorians around Berwyn—you can’t miss them! Featuring signature style details like beautiful wrap-around porches, turrets, towers and ornamental details, Queen Annes give a nod to the extravagance of the era. Many of the materials required in building a Victorian home were being mass-produced at the time and were able to be easily shipped thanks to the widespread train-routes that were established.
American Foursquares are unique in their effective use of space and were some of the first homes built in Berwyn. They were popular to build around the 1910s and were chosen because of their simplicity compared to their Victorian counterparts. Common features of an American Foursquare are two-and-a-half stories, large overhanging eaves, and a large front porch with wide steps. They tended to be built on larger lots, providing residents with plenty of space to plant and craft beautifully landscaped front lawns.
The Workman’s Cottage home can be defined by its namesake – a cottage. Most of Workman’s Cottages are typically 1.5 stories with a pointed roof; some are frame houses and others were built with brick. Workman’s Cottage houses are considered to be the predecessor to Chicago-style bungalows because of their similarities. The outsides of the homes may appear very different but the interiors can be very similar with almost the same interior floor plan being used.
The Tudor Revival style houses are some of the most recent houses to be built in Berwyn, starting to appear in the 1940s. The Tudor Revivals tend to sit on smaller lots than their bungalow neighbors and were built as a more affordable option. These houses boast a very steep pitched roof, intersecting gabled roofs, and are always 1.5 stories high. Some have small front porches but many also feature no porch at all. Berwyn’s Tudors tend to feature intricate stonework that frames different parts of the houses.
After World War I, the French Normandy architecture style grew popular among the growing middle class in America. Inspired by French chateaus, these houses were built on a smaller and more affordable scale. French Normandy houses can feature a round stone tower topped by a conical roof usually serving as the entrance or a design feature, arched doorways, steep roof pitches, high ridge lines, dormers and half-timbering.
Berwyn’s bungalows were generally built all around the same time in the 1920s to 1930s. Although many bungalows in a block were sometimes built by the same workers, each house in Berwyn will always be unique and different from its neighbors. The roofline, style of shingles, limestone accents, and even the style of decorative face brick is different from house to house. The bungalows in Berwyn are also full of ornamental details such as tiled roofs, stained glass windows, checkerboard brick patterns, and intricate limestone insets.