Residents of the Avalon-Sienna subdivision in Wheeling enjoy the peacefulness of the surrounding woods and prairie fields as well as all the amenities of the northwest suburbs.
The idyllic setting was a big draw for Violet Hancock and Mark Weiss when they purchased a home in the subdivision three years ago. You'll often see Weiss out walking his dog. "We love it here," Weiss said. "We can walk for a half hour and not cover the same ground.
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Listing sheetPrice: $375,000 to $550,000 single-family homes; $200,000 to $250,000 townhouses.
Age of homes: 14 to 16 years
Schools: Robert Frost Elementary and Oliver Holmes Middle schools in Wheeling Township Elementary District 21 and Wheeling High School in Northwest Suburban High School District 214.
Parks: Wheeling Park District
"We have a significant number of dog people here, and when we're out walking, we meet a lot of people because everyone is so cordial. Sometimes we walk for more than an hour. We back to Woodland Creek so we walk along the lake. It's a lovely place for walking the dog and walking ourselves."
Located on Frontage Road south of Palatine Road, Avalon-Sienna features 200 single-family homes and 200 townhouses built in the late '90s by Concord Homes.
"This is a wonderful upscale community," said Connie Hoos, real estate broker with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. "Both the townhouses and single-family homes have beautiful features and have always had great appeal."
Single-family homes generally feature nine-foot ceilings, open layouts with large kitchen areas, many of which have been upgraded, and partial or full basements. Some homes have lofts and first floor offices while all homes have nice size yards with attractive landscaping.
Townhouses feature ranch and two-story designs with 1,300 to 1,760 square feet. The Claridge offers two bedrooms, two baths and full basement while The Hanbury has three bedrooms, 2-1/2 baths and partial basement. Each has a balcony and two-car garage. This area features a lot of trees and nice landscaping too.
Newer construction was also a draw for the couple. "These homes were newer than most of what we looked at in Wheeling, which we liked," Weiss said. "We lived in a townhouse in Wheeling and wanted to stay in the community so the kids could continue in the same schools.
"We really love the home's open floor plan with 14-foot ceilings and the living room being all open. That's a big feature that we enjoy. We have a nice staircase and nice beautiful yard."
Weiss intends to make the home even more attractive by installing new hardwood floors this year.
Avalon-Sienna residents are a mix of families, empty nesters and couples with small children, Hoos said. "There's not a lot of turnover in this community; once people get in there, they love it, although the townhouses may be more of a springboard to a single-family home."
The community sits in a prime location close to shopping, restaurants and the Metra train station. And residents have easy access to Route 83 and to the expressway via Palatine Road.
The park district offers many programs and classes for all ages including the popular water park and Chevy Chase Golf Club.
Wheeling began as an overnight stop for travelers from Chicago to the Wisconsin Territory via the overland trail now known as Milwaukee Avenue. The string of inns, taverns and eateries established in the 1830s was the start of what is now Wheeling's well-known Restaurant Row.
Today, Wheeling offers a good balance of industry, commercial development and residential neighborhoods.