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Elm Street: Why Freddy Krueger's Street of Horror Is So Popular

Nightmare on Elm Street

When Wes Craven conceived "A Nightmare on Elm Street", the classic 1984 horror flick, he chose to set it on a street that would evoke a kind of "Everywhere", US. Craven's goal in using Elm Street was to imply that horror can happen anywhere - even in seemingly safe residential neighborhoods. 

In real life, the house where Freddy Krueger haunted the dreams of Nancy Thompson is on North Genesee Avenue in Los Angeles. However, Elm Street is a widespread address throughout the US. Seventeen of the country's largest 25 cities have one. There are 2,376 Elm Streets across the US - a total of 92,225 homes.

So if you want your own slice of the classic American nightmare you have 1,410 homes for sale to choose from. The median listing price for an Elm Street address is $129,900 - lower than the country's median of $227,400. Not many people want to live on a street where Freddy Kruger might pop into their dreams.

The most expensive Elm Street home is a $4.75 million house in Greenwich, CT. The street is one of the most desirable in town reports the listing agent.

Equally as coveted is Chicago's East Elm Street, a cluster of rowhouses in the city's Gold Coast neighborhood. A townhouse there was recently put into contract for $2.7 million.

Elm Street pops up in areas where developers are trying to evoke community and safety (via Mitchell Moss, an urban policy professor at New York University). With its connotations of arching branches and thick leaves, Elm Street is a much more appealing name than Spruce or Birch.

This is one explanation behind why the horror movie on Elm Street is so terrifying. The elm tree represents any sort of Americana and the sturdy protection an elm tree provides.

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