Campus Community

The University of Chicago’s main campus is in Hyde Park, where different people, perceptions, and pursuits coexist and thrive in a unique Chicago neighborhood on the southwest shore of Lake Michigan. Home to beautiful greenery, historic monuments, and exceptional architecture,the Hyde Park neighborhood offers many cultural and educational attractions, including the world-famous Museum of Science and Industry, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House, and many ethnic restaurants, family parks, bookstores, and coffee shops. From the exciting new season of plays at Court Theatre and groundbreaking art exhibitions at the Renaissance Society on the University of Chicago campus to the jazz and blues greats at the Hyde Park Jazz Festival, a rich cultural life thrives in Hyde Park.

Our People and History

Anchored by the University of Chicago, the Hyde Park community is infused with an intellectual energy, from the 18-year-old college student to the Bronzeville jazz musician, from the astrophysics researcher to the Woodlawn blogger, from the bookshop tourist to the senior playing chess in the park.

It is this energy that informs discussions and fuels activism, that cherishes history and prompts change, that tethers loyal residents to the community they call home. Hyde Park is a place for thinkers and poets, for conservatives and liberals, for the religious and secular. It is a place where diverse perspectives are shared and ideas are debated. 

Since the World’s Columbian Exposition and the opening of the University of Chicago in the 1890s, people of every race, religion, culture, and ethnicity have enjoyed such views of Hyde Park. Today the community is considered a model of successful urban integration.

This environment has long fostered a culture of challenge and discovery. From Nobel Prize–winner Enrico Fermi to Chicago’s first black mayor, Harold Washington, Hyde Park residents have had a tradition of speaking out, breaking barriers, and changing the world.

Other notable Hyde Parkers include:

  • Muhammad Ali
  • Steve Allen
  • Saul Bellow
  • Clarence Darrow
  • Herbie Hancock
  • Lorraine Hansberry
  • Hugh Hefner
  • Jesse Jackson Sr.
  • Carol Moseley Braun
  • Barack Obama

The South Side

From the blazing sunrises over Lake Michigan to the botanic garden that is UChicago’s campus, from the golf course in Jackson Park to the historic mansions lining Woodlawn Avenue, Hyde Park offers remarkable views. 

Home to Jackson Park, Washington Park, and the Midway Plaisance, all created by famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, the South Side is nestled in a sea of green space. To the east is the vast expanse of the lake, where the color palette shifts with every season and sunset.

The 18-mile Lakefront Trail welcomes bikers, runners, and walkers. It connects Hyde Park to historic South Shore in one direction and the city’s North Side in the other, with cultural stopping points at museums, stadiums, summer festivals, and tourist attractions along the way.

Plan a Visit

Walk along the paths of Nobel laureates and tomorrow’s leaders—plan your visit and schedule a tour of campus.