DePaul takeover? Two campuses, one rivalry


Allegra Coleman

DePaul College Prep and Lane campus separated by the Kerry Wood Cubs Field

By Allegra Coleman, Managing Editor

As I’m walking out of Jewel-Osco consumed by the laughter of my friends, I don’t notice the swarm of khaki bottoms and navy blue polo shirts that emerge from the curve of Roscoe St. At first, I’m confused as to why these prim and proper kids are so close to Lane, until I regretfully remember that DePaul recently moved their campus. The small, over-the-bridge rivalry that we used to have, no longer exists and now the only thing that separates us is a small sidewalk. 

Over the past few months of school, the closeness of DePaul has begun to stir something inside of me. Seeing them walk down the sidewalks on our campus and infiltrating the restaurants and grocery stores became irritable. They have this newly renovated $4.45 million property, with state of the art facilities, including a new dining hall that comes with the stigma that private school kids get a higher-quality of meals cooked every school day for breakfast and lunch. And still, just like us Lane students, they stop at Marianos for a quick snack after school. 

 But what makes it upsetting is this occurs during the day! If they are getting this new dining hall, why do I see DePaul students out dining during my lunch period? Do they now also have off-campus lunch on top of the nice meals? Will this be an everyday thing? And why can’t they go back over the bridge and stick to their Target and Panda Express? 

Most Lane students, including myself, enjoyed that we had most of Roscoe Village to ourselves and we didn’t have to share it with other students, let alone a whole other campus. 

“I liked that our school had its own place, with restaurants surrounding us so I felt like by DePaul moving closer to us, [it] took all that away as we now share the restaurants with them,” said senior Andrea Durjic, Div. 262, when discussing her reaction to the new sudden wave of students in the area this school year.

Not only has this impacted our neighboring restaurants, but it has created the most infuriating and impossible school commute. The mornings are now the most hectic, with both DePaul and Lane students crossing the streets after loading off the CTA and cars zooming down Western to get to their respective schools. Every morning parking on Rockwell and maneuvering around the extra bustle of bodies and cars has created a new kind of stress when trying to find parking before the bell rings — rather than after.

With the ongoing hassle of traffic, parking and the overall increase of people due to the introduction of an additional 600 students in the area, has made me realize that it will always be like this and DePaul’s campus is here to stay. 

With this move occurring so close to Lane and during my senior year too, I could have gone my last year without knowing they are in such a close relation to me. And I may be the only one who feels this way, as others don’t really notice Depaul or its students or have just gotten used to their closeness. 

“I honestly don’t even notice DePaul students as much as I thought I would,” said Durjic. 

But how can I not notice the proximity when I look out of my first period window and see the DePaul College Prep marquee or when I’m walking to Chipotle and there’s already a group of DePaul students sitting there. I feel mocked as they just stare, not with malicious intent but sometimes it feels like it. Them sitting there in their uniforms screams, “wealth, power, we’re taking over and permanently here to stay.”

I try not to let the flock of preppiness upset me as this move is in fact permanent. I will have to put up with the sharing of restaurants and the busyness of traffic in the morning for the rest of the school year and beyond. And as this is a recent development, solutions to the ongoing issue of traffic, parking and growing crowded after school, will have to be given more thought in order to improve.  

This is an overall new situation not only for me, but for everyone, students and staff on both sides of the sidewalk. And I now realize the reasoning behind their campus move is bigger than trying to fuel a rivalry but instead to create a better learning environment for their students, I still find it weird to do this transition now.  And though I can’t change it, in the end, I do think it’s about time for DePaul to mosey back over the bridge where they belong.