New $1.7 billion Bally’s Chicago casino at risk, says city official

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There is large news coming retired of Chicago this week astir 1 of nan biggest casino brands successful nan US and 1 of nan astir costly existent casino projects. Chicago City Alderman Brian Hopkins has revealed that he does not judge Bally’s caller Chicago casino will beryllium built.

The Bally’s Corporation received support to build a massive, $1.7 cardinal mega-casino astatine Chicago’s Freedom Center. Bally’s is presently operating a smaller casino successful Chicago’s Medinah Temple to money their Freedom Center location. Hopkins believes Bally’s will ne'er outgrow its Medinah Temple location and will extremity up abandoning its Freedom Center proposal. 

City Alderman takes purpose astatine Bally’s

Chicago City Alderman Brian Hopkins said astatine magnitude astir nan Bally’s Corporation and their casinos successful Chicago. Overall, his comments tin beryllium champion described arsenic pessimistic. 

“Bally’s has already indicated that they’re not successful a hurry to commencement construction. They’re years distant from it,” said Hopkins. These types of comments are thing caller for Hopkins. He was conscionable 1 of 2 Chicago aldermen who opposed nan caller Bally’s casino successful Chicago. 

Former management causing problems for Chicago

Bally’s caller Chicago casino and edifice was approved by erstwhile politician Lori Lightfoot successful May 2022. The very-memeable politician chose Bally’s complete Hard Rock International and Rush Street Gaming, who were some hoping to unfastened their ain casinos successful Chicago. 

Lightfoot told nan property that Bally’s bid was nan champion connection retired of nan 3 full bids made. Bally’s paid Chicago $40 cardinal upfront aft its bid was accepted. The corp besides promised to salary $4 cardinal per twelvemonth to nan metropolis connected apical of what it already has to salary successful taxes. 

Hopkins believes agreeing to this woody is 1 of nan worst actions of Lightfoot’s full 4-year stint arsenic Chicago mayor. However, it is worthy noting that Hopkins is often listed arsenic a imaginable mayoral candidate, truthful it makes consciousness why he mightiness want to region himself from Lightfoot’s past decisions.

Lack of backing puts Chicago mega casino astatine risk

The main logic Hopkins and group for illustration him are pessimistic astir Bally’s caller casino is because nan institution appears to deficiency backing for nan project. The caller Bally’s casino successful Chicago is projected to costs complete $1.7 billion. 

If built, it would beryllium 1 of nan astir costly and biggest casinos successful nan US. The caller mega casino would person complete 3,400 slot machines, much than 150 tables, a sportsbook, and a luxury 500-room edifice accompanied by a 3,000-seat theatre and outdoor amphitheater. The casino would besides employment complete 3,000 people. 

Right now, Bally’s is operating a overmuch smaller casino successful Chicago and a celebrated online casino site. Chicago gave Bally’s support to tally a mini casino astatine Medinah Temple. 

Part of nan logic for this is because Bally’s believed this casino would thief them raise costs for their Freedom Center site. Unfortunately for Bally’s nan costs person not been coming in. The impermanent location attracted conscionable complete 2,600 patrons per time successful October. This is down from 3,300 regular patrons successful September. 

According to Hopkins, “They don’t person nan money to do it. They were counting connected nan rate travel from nan Medinah Temple tract to money nan building project, and correct now, they don’t person it. The signs are connected nan wall that they’re going to enactment [at Medinah Temple] longer.”

Hopkins fears that  Medinah Temple whitethorn go a imperishable location for Bally’s. The institution has until September 9, 2026, to beryllium him wrong. This is nan deadline for Bally’s to build its $1.7 cardinal casino.