5 proposals submitted for casino-resort in Chicago

Chicago News

CHICAGO (AP) — Five proposals for a casino-resort have been submitted to the city of Chicago.

Bally’s Corp., HR Chicago, Rivers Chicago at McCormick and Rivers 78 Gaming submitted their bids by Friday’s deadline, Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s office said.

“The submission of bid responses represents a major step toward the thoughtful development of a casino-resort that uplifts our businesses, employs and empowers our residents and encourages tourism,” Lightfoot said.

Bally’s submitted two proposals for two different sites. If approved, Bally’s would self-manage its proposed casino operations. HR Chicago would be managed by Hard Rock International. Both Rivers Chicago at McCormick and Rivers 78 Gaming would be managed by Rush Street Gaming.

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The holder of the Chicago owner’s license would have the opportunity to operate a temporary casino for up to 24 months before opening a permanent casino, Lightfoot’s office said.

Applicants must apply to the state for the owner’s license and meet Illinois licensing requirements.

A review committee of city departments will determine the recommended winning bidder before moving its recommendation to Lightfoot, who will make the final determination along with City Council approval.

The proposed casino is part of a major gambling expansion that Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed in 2019.

The Chicago Sun-Times reported earlier this month that state regulators already have narrowed the number of proposals for a casino in Chicago’s south suburbs down to two, with one near the border of Homewood and East Hazel Crest and another in Matteson. The final selection for that license will happen next year.

Casino proposals in Rockford and Williamson County have received initial approval. There’ll also be one in Danville.

State regulators also are looking at two finalists for a new casino license in the Chicago suburb of Waukegan.

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