Author Topic: Investing in Illinois  (Read 3421 times)

Castanza

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Re: Investing in Illinois
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2019, 10:04:36 AM »
On Illinois, I agree, it seems a basket case. NY and CA at least have the high paying jobs to make it worthwhile to work their. I don’t see they being the case in Chicago. If I were to look for contrarian bets in the heartland, I would look probably at something like Pittsburgh or other ares in PA.

There's a large Lithuanian community in Chicago. I have relatives there and have visited them recently. Chicago is great city: great downtown, arts, culture, eating. I'd probably be happy living there. Climate sucks more than Boston though and there's no ocean, but overall it's a good place to live. RE is way cheaper than Boston. Jobs are there. There's tech sector that might not be as big as Boston/NY, but not tiny either. Logistics/transportation is still there and large.

Pittsburgh is contrarian? It's got CMU and that's one of the hottest schools in tech/AI. I'm pretty sure there's tons of tech jobs based on CMU collocation/startups/spinoffs/etc.

As someone who frequents Pittsburgh quite often I can say that's about all it has. University of Pitt isn't bad either. But that city is still heavily blue collar and the younger generation doesn't seem to stick around. The city is very dated and doesn't have great cultural arts and entertainment like other cities. Don;t get me wrong there are some fun areas in Pitt but it's still got a long way to go. That being said I believe Uber and Google were both looking at it for possible corporate branches. Some tech companies are beginning to move in (probably due to CMU and Pitt). Definitely seems more contrarian.

PA has struggled with poor leadership and it's reliance on industrial jobs. Harrisburg is terrible, both in living conditions, high taxes, pension issues, etc. PA also has some ridiculous regulations which prevent a good entertainment (food, bars, etc) from opening.

The whole northern half of PA has been a continual boom and bust story with he natural gas job exploitation. And Philly is well, Philly. They have a solid college presence but "innovative industry" never seems to stick.

State College (Penn State University) area has seen some good uptick the past decade. I think it helps having a decent DoD presence there.

Long story short, PA needs better leadership if it's going to turn around.


woodstove

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Re: Investing in Illinois
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2019, 02:42:39 AM »
Thanks for all the great discussion and ideas!  Simplistic take: be aware of potential future tax burden, which is a caution not a halt.

Train observation: Metra commuter trains in Chicago have BNSF name on them.  Large fixed investment.  Can still do good business.

Faustus

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Re: Investing in Illinois
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2019, 05:49:55 PM »
I live in Chicago and enjoy it; contrary to the sentiment in this thread, I believe the data indicates there has been healthy growth of high income earners in the city itself. Part of the problem with using the suburbs as a barometer is that the younger generation is more inclined to live in the city—that’s where a lot of the $1MM+ homes seem to be moving. With Walgreens, McDonalds, and others also moving HQ from burbs to city, this trend may continue.

If you want a deep value play, the south side of Chicago may be somewhat interesting. Many ‘cool’ neighborhoods on the north side are thick w/ commuters, strollers, coffee shops, bars, restaurants, etc. and—as a result—are pricey and less attractive to the artistic class. Eventually these early stage gentrifiers will stop spreading farther north and decide for a shorter commute south.

Gun violence, depopulation, and lack of investment are the headlines on the south side today, but one day that will change. Bronzeville is already fairly  safe, close to downtown on the redline, has a small college, is near the lake and looks to be getting an MLS stadium (also close to White Sox). You can’t get bottom dollar prices there, but it’s still cheap and has fairly good prospects if I had to speculate.
"The stars move still, time runs, the clock will strike"

Faustus

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Re: Investing in Illinois
« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2019, 07:27:18 AM »
Perhaps Illinois (specifically Chicagoland) has some opportunity beyond the immediate budget/pension hurdles:

Quote
An estimated 100 million people will migrate into and around the country over the coming century. And as they do, more energy resources, water, and density will be needed. “Most demographers expect an increasing share of these people to live in major American cities like New York, Chicago, and Phoenix,” the project reads.

Away from the threat of coastal flooding, away from forests that might burn, and near an extremely large source of freshwater, I can see why Chicago makes an appealing option for refugees in a dire climate scenario.  The source is looking at the latter decades of this century — so requires a long time horizon!

https://www.citylab.com/environment/2019/12/green-new-deal-atlas-climate-change-mcharg-center-maps-model/603415/
"The stars move still, time runs, the clock will strike"

RadMan24

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Re: Investing in Illinois
« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2019, 11:42:48 AM »
I live in Chicago and enjoy it; contrary to the sentiment in this thread, I believe the data indicates there has been healthy growth of high income earners in the city itself. Part of the problem with using the suburbs as a barometer is that the younger generation is more inclined to live in the city—that’s where a lot of the $1MM+ homes seem to be moving. With Walgreens, McDonalds, and others also moving HQ from burbs to city, this trend may continue.

If you want a deep value play, the south side of Chicago may be somewhat interesting. Many ‘cool’ neighborhoods on the north side are thick w/ commuters, strollers, coffee shops, bars, restaurants, etc. and—as a result—are pricey and less attractive to the artistic class. Eventually these early stage gentrifiers will stop spreading farther north and decide for a shorter commute south.

Gun violence, depopulation, and lack of investment are the headlines on the south side today, but one day that will change. Bronzeville is already fairly  safe, close to downtown on the redline, has a small college, is near the lake and looks to be getting an MLS stadium (also close to White Sox). You can’t get bottom dollar prices there, but it’s still cheap and has fairly good prospects if I had to speculate.

Well, so called "Windy City" should have a platform for a lot of wind farms! And, all the big tech want renewable power for their data centers. Put the two together and bam! You have a mini growth spurt. Problem is, those are low density jobs.

woodstove

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Re: Investing in Illinois
« Reply #15 on: December 21, 2019, 07:47:41 AM »
South side of Chicago is way better keep up, and I presume safer, than it was 50-60 years ago.  I think it is middle class neighborhoods.  There is tremendous capability of people in Illinois who have good attitudes to society, family etc and not enough opportunities to fully enable participation.  Classic value situations.