Skepticism surrounding new casino development in Chicago suburbs

March 8, 2024
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Developers claim confidence around new casino despite casino revenue decline in Illinois.

Opening just miles from a rival casino, investors insist the new Wind Creek development in Illinois will spell success, according to Wbez Chicago.  

Soon to be one of the tallest buildings rising over the south Chicago suburbs, the Wind Creek Hotel & Casino is due to open by the end of the summer.

Despite seven rival casinos – one of which is in a neighboring town – already seeing some declining casino revenue, many are confident that Wind Creek spells success for the area. 

Local Mayor Rich Hofield said, “It will be a nice addition to the Southland. The opportunities for employment, both construction and hospitality and the casino operations, are enormous.”

Expected to provide jobs for 800 people, the Wind Creek casino will be comprised of a 16-story, 252-room hotel, complete with a rooftop restaurant. The town of East Hazel Crest plans to utilize a piece of the funds it receives to develop a community benefits fund, providing college scholarships and cancer screenings for locals.  

However, with seven casinos already operating in the suburbs of Chicago, Wind Creek will be subject to a large amount of competition. When asked about the demand for land-based casinos in the region, Ed Feigenbaum – who monitors gaming for the Indiana Gaming Insight – said, "The market is not infinite." 

In September, Bally’s opened its own suburban Chicagoan casino which – after a delayed launch – fell $10m short of revenue projections for 2023.

However, revenue has been subject to a 9% increase in the New Year, which Wind Creek investors and stakeholders will hope spells a good omen for their investment in the south side of America’s third-most populous city.

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