University of Illinois - Class of 2016

(housing, friendships, future exams, all things 2016)
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AMilfordMan
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University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Sat Apr 20, 2013 11:34 am

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I posted this guide to visiting C-U in the applicants thread. Hopefully it is still useful here:


Housing
Champaign
Many of the frats/sororities are between: Gregory - 1st Street - Wright - Green. Housing tends to be pricey in this region due to proximity to class and bars.
North of Green: Cheap, cheap, cheap. Lots of UG engineers and international students in this part of town. The places aren’t the nicest, but they are on bus routes and the closest to County Market (the most convenient campus grocery store). Don’t go any further north than University Ave.
West of 1st Street: Lot’s of grad students. Prices vary. Mostly old houses turned into apts

Urbana
North of Florida, East of Lincoln, West of Vine, and South of University (the “state streets”….Illinois, Pennsylvania, etc.) is often on the more expensive side, but it is a very quiet, nice area. In general, Urbana is thought of as the more liberal, bike friendly, farmer’s market part of town. And it is. Hardwood floors, radiator heat, plenty of trees.
North of University is still not good.
East of Vine can get sort of far away and sketchy at times.
South of Florida is much more non-student residential. I wouldn’t expect to find much here, but it’s generally a nice area so long as you stay west of Philo road.

Savoy
This is where The Village is, and I've been told a lot of law students live there. Driving distance or a long bus ride. Cheap, quiet, and far away from everything. While that might not sound like a ringing endorsement, there are really some nice places in Savoy for a reasonable price. If you don’t mind the commute, it is worth looking into.

Local restaurants and bars
Thai - Siam Terrace, Urbana
Indian - Bombay Grill, Champaign
Chinese - Golden Harbor, Champaign
Mexican - Mas Amigos, Urbana
BBQ - Black Dog, Urbana
Burgers/fries - Seven Saints, Champaign and Crane Alley, Urbana
Breakfast - Courier Cafe, Urbana
Italian - Mia Za’s, Champaign
Sushi - KoFusion, Champaign does $1 sushi on Sunday and Monday
Random:
Desthil - Champaign does good fusion/high end/comfort food
Radio Maria - Champaign for tapas
Bacaro - the only $$$$ place in town

Bars:
Bro bars, undergrads, cheap drinks:
Joe’s, Firehaus, Brothers
Hipster/low-key:
Murphy’s
Sports and/or casual:
Legend’s, Guido’s, Esquire, Quality, Crane Alley, The Blind Pig and The Blind Pig Brewery***

***Likely the most popular bars for 21-30 year olds

Visit a few study locations
If you have a lot of time to kill during your visit, maybe spend some of it doing what you’ll likely be doing in law school; studying/reading/browsing the internet at a library or coffee shop. For starters, the campus has an Espresso Royale at seemingly every corner and downtown Champaign has Cafe Kopi.

Tour the campus
While Champaign-Urbana is a smaller town than many people are used to, the university itself is without a doubt a world-class research institution. Definitely take the chance to get out and explore, and try to appreciate C-U. The whole “metro” area is less than 250k people, but there are a huge variety of cultures represented on campus.
For reference, the law school is on the southern edge of campus, close to the stadiums, workout facility (ARC), and freshmen dorms. If you walk one block east from the law school and work your way north, you will go through the south quad, main quad, engineering/Bardeen quad, and northern/Beckman quad.
The part of town you might want to avoid starts just north of the Beckman quad. While there isn’t a lot of crime in C-U, it’s still best to stay south of University Ave.
Last edited by AMilfordMan on Tue Apr 23, 2013 7:36 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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tmon
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby tmon » Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:59 pm

First day back on the site in months (procrastinating exam prep, naturally) and look what I found!

If any admitted/enrolled/prospective students have any questions about Illinois and want a 1L's perspective feel free to ask. Preferably via PM, because I've stopped frequenting the site and PMs forward to my email inbox. If there are questions multiple people want to know about I'm happy to reply in here though. FWIW, I had some decent success in my first semester, which I attribute mainly to reading TLS articles about success in law school, and talking to 2Ls and 3Ls. I'm happy to give back any way I can :)

illiniguy1551
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby illiniguy1551 » Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:01 am

Has anyone scoped out really cheap housing within walking distance of campus and the law school? The campus is so big I don't even know where to begin looking lol. I'm just looking for a place to crash, will basically be a library/gym/bar rat.

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Mon Apr 22, 2013 11:03 pm

I've update the OP with info on housing and Champaign-Urbana for anyone interested.

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Chardee_MacDennis
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby Chardee_MacDennis » Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:20 am

illiniguy1551 wrote:Has anyone scoped out really cheap housing within walking distance of campus and the law school? The campus is so big I don't even know where to begin looking lol. I'm just looking for a place to crash, will basically be a library/gym/bar rat.


Check out Craigslist or Padmapper. Anything through the management companies will prob be too expensive.

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tmon
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby tmon » Tue Apr 23, 2013 6:57 pm

If you guys have access to the housing forum on the admitted students website, check that out. It's REALLY helpful and I found my place because of it. Specifically, there should be info on management companies and the number of complaints they've had, as well as responses to a survey they sent to us current students about our housing situations. Lots of good info.

To add to your restaurant list:

Maize for mexican. Great food, cheap.
Also, Escobars for mexican, but classier. Not cheap at all, but one of my favorite places in the city for a nice meal.
There's a newer place, Big Grove that's also on the pricier side, but a pretty awesome beer list, and everything on the menu is quality. Expensive, but well made bar food kind of stuff, I guess.

+1 to Blind Pig. Favorite place. Especially the back patio when it's nice out. Great beer menu.

+1 to Kams not being on the list too. :lol:

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Tue Apr 23, 2013 7:28 pm

tmon wrote:Maize for mexican. Great food, cheap.
Also, Escobars for mexican, but classier. Not cheap at all, but one of my favorite places in the city for a nice meal.
There's a newer place, Big Grove that's also on the pricier side, but a pretty awesome beer list, and everything on the menu is quality. Expensive, but well made bar food kind of stuff, I guess.


Escobar's is my favorite place in town for a classier meal.

tmon wrote:+1 to Blind Pig. Favorite place. Especially the back patio when it's nice out. Great beer menu.


The Piglet and Cowboy Monkey are awesome during the summer/warm weather.

tmon wrote:+1 to Kams not being on the list too. :lol:


Kam's is a smelly hellhole filled with STDs.

Sillygoose31
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby Sillygoose31 » Wed Apr 24, 2013 8:26 am

illiniguy1551 wrote:Has anyone scoped out really cheap housing within walking distance of campus and the law school? The campus is so big I don't even know where to begin looking lol. I'm just looking for a place to crash, will basically be a library/gym/bar rat.


I have found places through management companies about a 1/2 mile from the law school. As of right now it looks like the cheapest rent prices including utilities for a studio/one bedroom are around $580. That price includes rough estimates for gas and electricity. If you plan on bringing a car I have found most companies do a parking lease that will set you back at least $40 a month.

I would be happy to answer any questions through PM.

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Wed Apr 24, 2013 10:06 am

Sillygoose31 wrote:
illiniguy1551 wrote:Has anyone scoped out really cheap housing within walking distance of campus and the law school? The campus is so big I don't even know where to begin looking lol. I'm just looking for a place to crash, will basically be a library/gym/bar rat.


I have found places through management companies about a 1/2 mile from the law school. As of right now it looks like the cheapest rent prices including utilities for a studio/one bedroom are around $580. That price includes rough estimates for gas and electricity. If you plan on bringing a car I have found most companies do a parking lease that will set you back at least $40 a month.

I would be happy to answer any questions through PM.


Also, if you rent in west Urbana, the street parking passes are ~$100/yr., and that can save you some money.

Burne182
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby Burne182 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 11:22 am

For those of you that went to UIUC for undergrad-- how nuts is graduation weekend?

My husband and I are going house hunting the weekend after next (graduation weekend) because we really couldn't do it another time. Our hotel is booked, I'm just wondering if we're even going to be able to have dinner in CU or if everywhere will be packed.

And, if everywhere is going to be packed, any thoughts on decent restaurants outside of town?

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:12 pm

Burne182 wrote:For those of you that went to UIUC for undergrad-- how nuts is graduation weekend?

My husband and I are going house hunting the weekend after next (graduation weekend) because we really couldn't do it another time. Our hotel is booked, I'm just wondering if we're even going to be able to have dinner in CU or if everywhere will be packed.

And, if everywhere is going to be packed, any thoughts on decent restaurants outside of town?


It will be busy but not unbearable. Campus will be a bit of a madhouse, but most of the areas with housing will be fine. Restaurants will probably have anywhere from a 10 minute wait to a long long wait, just depending on the restaurant. You can get in somewhere, and you can always get drinks while you wait.

Burne182
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby Burne182 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:38 pm

AMilfordMan wrote:
Burne182 wrote:For those of you that went to UIUC for undergrad-- how nuts is graduation weekend?

My husband and I are going house hunting the weekend after next (graduation weekend) because we really couldn't do it another time. Our hotel is booked, I'm just wondering if we're even going to be able to have dinner in CU or if everywhere will be packed.

And, if everywhere is going to be packed, any thoughts on decent restaurants outside of town?


It will be busy but not unbearable. Campus will be a bit of a madhouse, but most of the areas with housing will be fine. Restaurants will probably have anywhere from a 10 minute wait to a long long wait, just depending on the restaurant. You can get in somewhere, and you can always get drinks while you wait.


OK, thank you (as always) Milford. I assumed as much, but my undergrad city shut the fuck down during graduation week/weekend and most locals went away for that time and rented their house. If it was going to be anything like that I was concerned...

Also, in terms of home location, how's the bus system? I heard it was adequate, but when I was looking at trip routes for some of the homes we're considering (less than 4 miles from school) it was giving me like 70 minute transit times... that can't be possible, can it?!

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tmon
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby tmon » Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:05 pm

Burne182 wrote:OK, thank you (as always) Milford. I assumed as much, but my undergrad city shut the fuck down during graduation week/weekend and most locals went away for that time and rented their house. If it was going to be anything like that I was concerned...

Also, in terms of home location, how's the bus system? I heard it was adequate, but when I was looking at trip routes for some of the homes we're considering (less than 4 miles from school) it was giving me like 70 minute transit times... that can't be possible, can it?!


I live under 4 miles away. I started by taking the bus in and realized that (for me, and the route I'm on at least) it's just not convenient enough when I have a car at my disposal. It's also not 70 minutes either though. Sometimes 30-40 though. I'll still use it once in a while, or even bike now an then, but a car is really nice to have and use off campus. I think the problem is the route lines and how they're set up. You can catch one pretty much anywhere, but you'll probably have to either wait for a transfer or walk a ways. I've found the Google Maps transit directions generally helpful and accurate, just make sure you're entering a realistic time for the trip, or that might skew things. Alternatively, the transit website is helpful--cumtd.com. If you just can't drive you could look into some of the nicer complexes, many of which have their own dedicated shuttle to the school. The Village is probably the most well known one, but there are others, I believe. Most of us just have a car though, I think.

Burne182
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby Burne182 » Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:12 pm

tmon wrote:
Burne182 wrote:OK, thank you (as always) Milford. I assumed as much, but my undergrad city shut the fuck down during graduation week/weekend and most locals went away for that time and rented their house. If it was going to be anything like that I was concerned...

Also, in terms of home location, how's the bus system? I heard it was adequate, but when I was looking at trip routes for some of the homes we're considering (less than 4 miles from school) it was giving me like 70 minute transit times... that can't be possible, can it?!


I live under 4 miles away. I started by taking the bus in and realized that (for me, and the route I'm on at least) it's just not convenient enough when I have a car at my disposal. It's also not 70 minutes either though. Sometimes 30-40 though. I'll still use it once in a while, or even bike now an then, but a car is really nice to have and use off campus. I think the problem is the route lines and how they're set up. You can catch one pretty much anywhere, but you'll probably have to either wait for a transfer or walk a ways. I've found the Google Maps transit directions generally helpful and accurate, just make sure you're entering a realistic time for the trip, or that might skew things. Alternatively, the transit website is helpful--cumtd.com. If you just can't drive you could look into some of the nicer complexes, many of which have their own dedicated shuttle to the school. The Village is probably the most well known one, but there are others, I believe. Most of us just have a car though, I think.


Thanks so much! I do have a car, but was under the impression that parking was kind of a pain. If that's not the case I'm far less concerned with the bus system! (I also hope to bike to class when possible, but wanted a plan for when the weather won't allow that...)

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tmon
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby tmon » Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:28 pm

Burne182 wrote:Thanks so much! I do have a car, but was under the impression that parking was kind of a pain. If that's not the case I'm far less concerned with the bus system! (I also hope to bike to class when possible, but wanted a plan for when the weather won't allow that...)


I wouldn't say it's a pain. You have a couple options. One is to park in one of the Assembly Hall (State Farm Arena?....whatever they're changing it to?) lots with a permit. Not sure on the cost, but I'm under the impression that it's cheaper than the other option if you're going to be using it every day. The down side is, it's a little walk. Not that far though.

Alternatively there are always open meter spots, both on the street north of the school and south, and in the lot on the south side of the street. It's not ridiculously expensive (especially if you're used to city parking) but obviously it adds up. Also, the meters can be paid/re-upped online, which is really convenient.

Biking is do-able, but I got lazy/time-stressed first semester and stopped. There are some main roads with bike lanes though, which is awesome. Check out Google Maps for that too. This semester the weather's just started to get nice as exams are hitting, so I haven't even taken mine out yet. It's nice to have though.

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:32 pm

I've looked off campus before and was concerned about the bus system as well. I know that housing between John and University tends to offer a lot of bus options until you get around Mattis. That's a good area to look.

If you can find a spot with a good bus route, that's your best option. Otherwise, I usually drive down Florida Ave. multiple times everyday, and I'm constantly seeing people carrying law books from their car at Assembly Hall. Based off of that, I imagine parking at Assembly Hall is a good option.

dewdawn
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby dewdawn » Wed May 01, 2013 11:21 am

any apartment suggestion for a poor law student without a car?

goononon
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby goononon » Wed May 01, 2013 8:20 pm

Anyone knows something about the Tower@3rd housing?

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Wed May 01, 2013 9:52 pm

goononon wrote:Anyone knows something about the Tower@3rd housing?


Mostly undergrads and the biggest perk is probably proximity to undergrad bars. IMO you could do better for the money.

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Tekrul
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby Tekrul » Wed May 01, 2013 10:12 pm

tmon your avatar is b!tchin', seriously i love it

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tmon
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby tmon » Sun May 05, 2013 11:57 am

dewdawn wrote:any apartment suggestion for a poor law student without a car?

Two different options come to mind, the latter of which I'm not entirely sure of:

1-Look for a place as close to campus as possible, preferably on a bus line. See my reply to Burne182 above for some bus info. The downside is that you might be surrounded by undergrads, but at least you wont have a long commute. You can also bike, but that doesn't really help once it starts snowing. Whatever you do, make sure getting to campus isn't some huge chore if possible. 1L is stressful enough without worrying about getting to class on time.

2-Live in one of the complexes that offers a shuttle service, like The Village. Although I know a lot of people live there, I'm not sure if many of them live without a car, however, and it's quite removed from campus. So I have a feeling it'd kind of suck to be living in Savoy or whatever, only able to leave home if/when the shuttle's running. Also, not sure on the price of those apartments either, and they may be more expensive than other options, though they will hook you up with other law student roommates most likely.

Tekrul wrote:tmon your avatar is b!tchin', seriously i love it

Thank you! :)

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AMilfordMan
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby AMilfordMan » Sun May 05, 2013 1:17 pm

Tekrul wrote:tmon your avatar is b!tchin', seriously i love it


Tekrul, you'll be glad to know that every time we have crossed paths on this forum I have read your posts in Kenneth's voice.

Good work.

illiniguy1551
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby illiniguy1551 » Mon May 06, 2013 11:15 am

Any guys looking for roommates? I'm interested in some 2 BR apartments on/near Lincoln Street, about a mile from the law school. PM if interested.

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anacharsis
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby anacharsis » Tue May 07, 2013 9:12 am

I've put down the first seat deposit and it looks like I am in fact going to go to Illinois.
I'm looking for a roommate, and, for that matter, a place to live. I know little about the locations. I have no car, but may have a bike by the time I get down there.
Any meticulously quiet people looking for the same in a roommate?

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North
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Re: University of Illinois - Class of 2016

Postby North » Wed Jun 05, 2013 12:24 pm

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