Chicago is most famously known as the “Windy City.” Why is it called that and is Chicago really windy? Let’s find some answers.
Chicago, Illinois is located at the intersection of several waterways which lead the area to become the site of travel and home to many indigenous Tribes such as the Hoocąk, Jiwere, Nutachi, Baxojem and many others.
Chicago’s first permanent, non-indigenous resident was Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, a trader from Haiti who arrived in the 1770s. He is also known as the “Founder of Chicago.”
Chicago was incorporated as a city in 1837 and became an important transportation and trading center between the eastern and western United States. In fact, the Chicago Board of Trade, the first ever standardized exchange trade was established in the city in 1848. Additionally, today 50% of U.S. rail freight still continues to pass through Chicago.
The city is known for its lead in many sectors, such as public health, infrastructure and technology. This includes a park system, public sanitation facilities, public health reform laws, advancements in architectural engineering such as the skeletal steel construction, and building with modern construction materials.
Chicago and the entertainment industry
Chicago is the third largest media market in the United States after New York City and Los Angeles. In fact, the city hosts major television network stations such as ABC, NBC, Fox, and CBS. It is also the home to famous talk shows like “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” “Steve Harvey Show,” and “The Jerry Springer.”
In addition, Chicago is also the home multiple television shows like “Married…with Children,” “Kenan & Kel,” “Chicago Hope,” “Prison Break,” “The Good Wife,” “Shameless,” and “Mike and Molly.”
Where does “Windy City” come from
Is Chicago the windiest city in the U.S.? While your first thought may be that the city’s nickname came from its high wind speeds, you may be surprised to know that Chicago isn’t the windiest city in the United States. In fact, it only ranks 12th for the fastest average wind speed of 10.3 mph.
While Chicago may be a naturally breezy and windy area due to being on the shores of Lake Michigan, as of 2010, Boston, Massachusetts had the highest average annual wind speed of 12.3 mph.
If Chicago isn’t the windiest place, where did the nickname even come from? There are a few versions to that answer.
In 1893, Charles A. Dana, an editor of the “New York Sun,” published an editorial calling Chicago a “windy city.” He did so in reference to the city’s full-of-hot air politicians who were advocating and wooing organizers to hold the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in the city instead of in New York.
While Dana may have popularized the nickname “Windy City,” there are a few editorials that have used that phrase predating Dana’s use. This includes a 1876 “Cincinnati Enquirer” article with the headline of “THAT WINDY CITY. Some of the Freaks of the Last Chicago Tornado.” Where the term Windy City was used to reference speakers who were full of wind.
Are there other Chicago nicknames?
Despite “Windy City” being the most popular nicknames for Chicago, the city has its fair share of other names. This includes “Chi-Town,” which is shortened from Chicago, and “Mud City,” because of how the city used to be a mudflat.
Lastly, another nickname for the city is “City of Big Shoulders” which comes from the fifth line of Carl Sandburg’s poem called “Chicago”. This line referenced the city being a key financial center for agricultural markets, its meat-processing industry, and railroad hub.
Chicago apartments for rent
If you’re looking to call the Windy City home, Localize has plenty of listings for rent. Here are just a few rentals on the market along with their insights so you can find your perfect home.
Space: 2 beds, 2 baths, 1,500 sqft
Neighborhood: The Loop
This 2 bed apartment is located within the historic michigan boulevard landmark district, one of the world’s most-recognized one-sided streets, and the location of many significant cultural institutions, clubs, hotels, and prestigious office buildings.
According to Localize, this space has 340 sqft more than similar properties in this neighborhood.
Space: 2 beds, 2 baths, 1,100 sqft
Neighborhood: River North
This River North corner loft features 14 feet timber ceilings, exposed brick, oak hardwood floors, maple kitchen with black granite, and a large balcony.
According to Localize, while the space is in an area with slightly above average crime rates, there are plenty of nightclubs and restaurants nearby. There is also a new green riverfront park space coming soon.
Space: 2 beds, 4 baths
This 2 bed space is located on Magnificent Mile and its former residence was renowned designer Michael Richman. The apartment features dark hardwood floors, wool premium carpet, expansive windows with views of Michigan Avenue and Chicago’s cityscape.
The building features 24 hour door staff, an indoor pool, fitness room, and sundeck.
Space: studio, 1 bath, 450 sqft
Neighborhood: Gold Coast
This studio apartment is located in the Luxury Constellation Condominium in the Gold Coast area. It’s a north facing unit with views of the city, Lake Michigan, and Lincoln Park. The building features a 24 hour doorman and the space is near restaurants, bike trails, and Lake Shore Drive.
According to Localize, it is located in an area with below average crime rates and is near the Astor street landmark district.
Space: 3 beds, 2 baths, 1,800 sqft
Neighborhood: West Loop
This luxury apartment is located in Fulton Market District boutique building. It features an expansive living/dining area with a fireplace, private balcony, hardwood floors, custom kitchen, and a king-sized en suite with a walk-in closet and luxury bath.
According to Localize, it is located in an area with average crime rates and there will be a new riverfront park space soon nearby.
If the city has caught your eye, there are plenty of listings on the market for rent and sale.
Localize features all listings along with insights on the space and neighborhood so you can find your dream space.