When deciding where to raise your family, what are your top considerations? For some, it’s the schools. For others, it might be a caring community to look out for you and your children. And for others, it’s more space and room to grow.
That’s why Niles is a great choice. It’s close to the city (think: 25 minutes from the Loop) with access to outdoor recreation and great public schools. The Village of Niles is a community that stands apart from the rest — and here are six reasons why.
Supporting students and guiding them on their journeys is a priority in all Niles schools. Kids in Niles attend schools in elementary and middle school districts 63, 64 or 71 and high school districts 207 or 219.
Every district is focused on providing individualized support and resources for students to succeed in life, whether they continue to four-year college, community college, trade school or a career. Maine Township High School District 207, for instance, partners with nearly 700 local businesses to provide high school students with internships and career experiences. District 207 Director of Communications Brett Clark says, “We inform kids about options. We want to teach them about how their education translates to their future.” First-rate educational programs to meet the needs of students, from AP courses to a dual-credit program with local universities and colleges to certificates and college-level courses, are part of it.
The other part is caring, attentive teachers, a diverse student body and outstanding extracurriculars. “Niles is like the city but better,” says resident Nina Laspina. “In addition to a great education, the schools are diverse, welcoming and inclusive. It’s everything I want for my kids and my family.”
2. Making your dream home possible
Niles has homes for your growing family and encourages you to build up or build out on an existing home — add a bedroom, a bathroom, a second floor — through its home improvement program. With “Grow Your Home,” the Village will waive as much as $5,000 in permit fees.
The incentive is designed to allow starter homes to grow as families do and entices home values to rise in areas where home improvement renovations are made.
And thanks to the Niles Design District, the best Chicago-area hub of kitchen, bath and home design businesses within a 1.5-mile stretch just outside of the city, you’ll be one step closer to building your dream home. Find personalized services, competitive prices, superior products and expert advice in one convenient location on Milwaukee Avenue in Niles.
3. An easy place to raise kids
“If you ask a Niles resident what he or she thinks of the village, don’t be surprised to hear, ‘We love Niles,'” says Katie Schneider, Community Engagement Coordinator for the Village of Niles. And it’s no surprise. After all, residents go out of their way to take care of one another.
Take Nina Laspina, resident of Niles and self-proclaimed “stay-at-home domestic goddess.” As Girl Scout Troop Leader, Nina is embedded in the Niles community and loves Niles because “you can be yourself here.” Nina says, “We are surrounded by a community that cares about us. The education is great, and the schools are diverse, welcoming and inclusive. It’s everything I want for my kids and my family.”
The supportive community paired with free recreational activities and access to the outdoors makes Niles an easy place to raise kids.
Find the Bunker Hill Forest Preserve (rated five out of five on Yelp for hiking and scenic views), one of the 25 parks and the Tam O’Shanter Golf Course, maintained by the Niles Park District. Residents enjoy the community garden, rain garden and pollinator garden. A Green Business Award program encourages businesses to reduce waste and conserve water and energy, so residents know that when they shop local, they’re also promoting good environmental practices.
4. Location, location, location
Close proximity to everything — work, shopping, daily essentials, family entertainment and outdoor recreation — is essential for busy parents. It’s easy to get around and make stops at Patel Brothers, a national Indian grocery chain; H-Mart, a Korean superstore; and Jerry’s Fruit & Garden, a long-standing, family-owned fresh produce market.
Niles is just 15 miles from downtown Chicago, accessible by three major highways, the CTA Blue Line and the Pace Pulse Express Bus on Milwaukee Avenue. Plus, it’s 15 minutes from O’Hare International Airport.
The great location makes it easy for businesses to attract top talent, which is why Niles is home to major corporate headquarters including Shure, Hammacher Schlemmer, The Bradford Exchange and Great Lakes Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Find everything you need right here in Niles.
5. Village services
In Niles, the government — from Village Hall to Police to Fire, the Teen Center to the Fitness Center, Family Services to Public Works — cares deeply about its residents and works hard on their behalf to keep making Niles better.
Niles Family Services employs 25 licensed social workers to provide assistance — in multiple languages — for residents, including mental wellness programs, an emergency hotline, addiction programs and more.
The array of services has become especially important during the coronavirus outbreak. “When we were going into this pandemic, a lot of towns were struggling to help their residents,” Schneider says. “Family Services in Niles is set up to respond to those things.”
The Niles Free Bus service and Pulse Milwaukee Line routes connect the major shopping centers, natural attractions and stops in every neighborhood so residents are always within walking distance to home. Niles Village services have you covered.
6. Arts and culture
Niles is home to 170 restaurants, and people flock from nearby cities and even bordering states to sample authentic Korean cuisine, Polish eats, Greek dining and more. Looking for a bakery? Niles may have more per capita than any place around, including family-owned Oak Mill Bakery, Niles’ go-to cake shop for special occasions.
Lovers of arts and culture — or Instagram users looking for a great photo op — can’t miss the Leaning Tower of Niles, a half-size replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, which was recently added to the National Register of Historic Places.
The Village’s Arts & Culture Advisory Council makes sure that art is central to life in the community, including its recent mural project at outdoor locations. Niles prioritizes artistic expression in the community and makes it easy to access an array of museums, exhibits, public art and cultural events in Niles, the city and neighboring communities.
We recognize it’s hard to decide where to move your home and your family, but Niles makes it easy. Niles makes it possible to get a great start in life, have neighbors who care, and be close to the city and the outdoors. Make a life in Niles. It’s where you belong.
Thinking about relocating? This community neighboring Chicago is the perfect mix of suburban and urban living — and here, families come first. Families looking for great schools and a supportive community, look no further than the Village of Niles.
For more information, visit loveniles.com.