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Oakland: A Neighborhood in Focus

Date : June 15, 2012

Oakland has a colorful history. It used to be a neighborhood where people didn’t come looking for homes, instead they left for another town. Between 1960 and 1990, almost 70% of the people living here left for a better town. What remains now is so small, that real estate agents rarely even call the town by its actual name, instead adding it to the greater Bronzeville area. But then something changed. Those who stayed behind, who decided to reclaim their town from the criminal element that had taken root, went on to do some major changes. They formed groups, action committees, and citizen patrols, to make Oakland a place where people would once again want to live in. And they succeeded, making this town into a neighborhood in waiting. Here’s a short background of the place, and why you may be interested in moving there.

The place is still small, in fact the whole neighborhood fits in a square mile, and has only a few thousand people living here. There’s commercial activities, but you need to know where to look in order to find daily entertainment. Of course that has good sides as well. You won’t find any traffic jam, any honking cars, and the green spaces are plentiful. There’s even a lake right outside of town. When crime ran rampant, the Ida B. Wells complex used to be the central place for suspect activities. But ever since the building was demolished, the whole neighborhood started to revitalize, and crime gradually went down, until Oakland became one of the most peaceful area in the country. This didn’t happen before a lot of the population left town, but those who stayed were determined, and saw their dream through, of living in a nice neighborhood, free of criminal gangs.

Now, ever since its construction in 1871, Oakland is perhaps in the best shape it’s been so far. There’s a lot of activities that can be found, if you know where to look. People can go to playgrounds or basketball courts at Mandrake, Ellis and Oakland parks. The Oakland Museum awaits art lovers. For the locals, Norman’s Bistro is the place to be and meet new people and old friends. Many of the houses found there are old, turn of the century houses, that usually transfer from one generation to the next. But because of the neighborhood’s unique situation, they are often available at a very reasonable rate. This is why as a potential home owner, this could become a place of choice to get a great property, with a great view, in a small and peaceful area, for not that much money.

Overall, there’s a lot of places that are much more well known, and can be quantified very easily on the real estate market. This neighborhood is more of an anomaly, a place where time seemed to stop, and where people gave room to trees, grass and nature. While it’s not a new area, it does have its charm, and the current residents are passionate about having a nice, peaceful neighborhood. For those who share the same goals, this may be an opportunity.

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