Ghost wrote:I just want to confirm before I run off and sign a lease, cars are NOT required right?
I live at Regents, have a car, and park on the street. This has worked well for me. I think I might break even or make a little by not having to pay for the train and being able to shop at the CHEAP target store on highway 55 (prices are 50-60% of what they are in Hyde Park).
However, having a car in Chicago is extremely expensive and difficult if you don't do it right-- you have to pay for a 100-buck city tag, get ticketed all the time, really have trouble finding parking outside of regents, and have to pay very expensive parking downtown, in the north side, and in south loop.
To survive with a car, I brought an out of state license plate (didn't have to pay for the city tag), appealed every single ticket I got (they will always overturn them if you argue it forceably enough), learned the art of being aggressive and reckless in taking open parking spots (and sizing up the person you are battling for a spot-- never
mess with Southsiders), tapping without shame (fitting into spots with one inch on each side), and have found several secret free parking spots downtown, in South Loop, by sports venues, and in Wrigleyville. Driving in Chicago is actually a great way to let off some of the stress and frustration from 1L year.
To answer your actual question, you do not need a car for anything. Professor Baird (former dean) has been teaching at Chicago for like 20 years and lives in Hyde Park. He mentioned that he has never had a car or drivers license and just takes cabs or public transportation everywhere.