The west suburban village of Riverside was designed in 1869 by famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed New York City's Central Park. Riverside's innovative street plan and impressive open spaces are regarded as landmarks in American residential planning, and many elements of Olmsted's original plan including... Show all »
The west suburban village of Riverside was designed in 1869 by famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed New York City's Central Park. Riverside's innovative street plan and impressive open spaces are regarded as landmarks in American residential planning, and many elements of Olmsted's original plan including expansive green parkways and gas-lit street lights are still evident throughout the community. Riverside is located 10 miles west of downtown Chicago, and its population is 8,895 (2000). It covers an area of two square miles. Instead of planning the streets of Riverside in a traditional "grid," right-angle fashion, the streets of Riverside were laid out to follow the natural contours of the area's Des Plaines River, and wind throughout the village. The town's plan also comprised a park system that created several large parks and 41 smaller, triangular parks located at various intersections throughout town. The entire village of Riverside was designated a National Historical Landmark in 1970, in recognition of its significance as a planned community and for its unique landscaping plan. In terms of single-family housing, Riverside boasts a large number of housing styles including Prairie-style (the well-known Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Avery Coonley estate is located in the village), well-maintained bungalows, modern ranch homes, and large Victorian and early-twentieth-century mansions. Visitors to the suburb can take guided or self-guided walking tours that include many of Riverside's distinctive single-family residences. There are also some townhouses and condominiums available. In their leisure time, villagers can spend a day at the world-famous Brookfield Zoo, located in neighboring Brookfield. They can also shop at the town's numerous stores, take some classes with the local recreation department, check out some books from the Riverside Public Library, or join one of Riverside's many organizations. Four public grade schools, a junior high school, Riverside-Brookfield High School, and one private school serve the students of Riverside. At Riverside-Brookfield High School, the student to teaching faculty ratio is 13.3/1, and 79.7 percent of the school's professional personnel hold master's degrees or beyond. Eighty-nine percent of Riverside-Brookfield's graduates continue their education after high school. Riverside is located on the Burlington Northern Santa Fe line, and there are numerous daily stops at the station. It takes less than 20 minutes to travel from Riverside to Union Station in downtown Chicago. « Show less
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