White Place: A pocket neighborhood?

In the late 1800s, S.R. White platted 38 acres of what would become White Place in Bloomington, Illinois.

Why is this interesting? Well… because when we stumbled upon White Place off University Avenue I immediately thought– pocket neighborhood and I’m fascinated with pocket neighborhoods. I recently visited Bloomington IL, a moderately sized midwestern town but certainly bigger than my own southern home. A two and half hour ride from Chicago, Bloomington is home to State Farm, Illionois State University, Illinois Wesleyan and had he not been assassinated maybe Abraham Lincoln’s post-presidential home.

The downtown area of Bloomington is a renovator/house flipper’s Graceland. Prices stay low (for now), the streets are lush and green (for now) and the potential is high. The streets are lined with Queen Annes, craftsman bungalows and prairie style houses. I’m not sure why anyone would want to live anywhere else in Bloomington but in a downtown spot and White Place was undoubtedly a curious corner.

white place gate


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The street in White Place is brick,

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And there’s a strip of green space running down the middle and a round island in the center that has been filled with shrubs and perennials.

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white place5

I imagine that the residents take care in planting the island and around the lamp posts. I’m wondering if they actually light the place at night?

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There is one house for sale in White Place and although it needs work, you won’t believe the price. See what I mean?


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  • As a fellow lover of pocket neighborhoods, I was so excited to see this beautiful spot! There are similar neighborhoods in St Louis, and they just exude community. I’d love to see something like Blackbirds built in the Raleigh area one day…

      • SARI, I’ve posted about blackbirds like 3 or 4 times already. Get ON IT. It’s Barbara Bestor. Its here in Echo Park…. and maybe WE should be the ones to bring it to Raleigh.

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