Austin is part of the Chicago North Side. Chicago North encompasses numerous affluent and up-and-coming neighborhoods located north of the Loop. Located just seven miles west of the Chicago Loop, Austin is Chicago's largest community by land area and second in population. The Austin community, which shares a border with Chicago suburbs Oak Park and Cicero, is made up of four neighborhoods: North Austin, South Austin, Galewood, and The Island
Housing styles in Austin include the large frame homes built in the early twentieth century, as well as brick two-flats, small frame homes and the story-and-a-half brick bungalows in North Austin. In South Austin, rowhouses, courtyard apartment buildings and brick three-flats dominate the neighborhood. The 19th century residential core, a designated National Register Historic District in 1985, is still central to the Midway Park area north of Austin and Lake.
In Chicago North, the Chicago Public School District offers students a number of highly regarded public schools, including the award-winning Walter Payton College Prep School. The area is easily accessible by car thanks to the Kennedy Expressway and Lake Shore Drive. There are also dozens of CTA Lines and Metra railways, including the Union Pacific North Line and the Union Pacific Northwest Line, providing transportation to and from downtown Chicago and the north and northwest suburbs.
Residents within the Chicago North area enjoy quick access to several lakefront parks and beaches, including Oak Street Beach and North Avenue Beach. In addition to world-renowned shopping along the Magnificent Mile, Chicago North features vibrant nightlife and acclaimed restaurants throughout many of its communities. Chicago North is also home to Wrigley Field, one of the oldest major league ballparks in the country.