Chicago’s Bally’s Casino Hotel has received the green light to proceed with a major redesign plan after facing some setbacks. The original plan to build a 400-room hotel as part of the second phase of development was altered due to water pipe issues. However, the new plan did not require approval from the City Council, as it will be constructed on the southern part of the site rather than the north end near the Chicago River.
City Zoning Administrator Patrick Murphey approved the new plan, stating that it meets all requirements and maintains the same floor area ratio as initially outlined by the company. The construction timeline will not be affected by the design change, and the casino is expected to open in 2026 at the former site of the Chicago Tribune’s printing factory.
Despite the approval, the River North Residents Association has expressed concerns about the revised plans, citing traffic and public safety fears. They are pushing for a transparent and comprehensive review process that includes input from the local community.
As construction progresses, Bally’s has set up a temporary casino at Medinah Temple, which has not met expectations. The casino reported a $9.3 million profit last month, ranking third among the 16 Illinois casinos. Mayor Brandon Johnson had anticipated $35 million in tax revenue from the casino by 2024, but the current results have fallen short of this goal.
In an effort to improve performance, Bally’s plans to offer more transportation options, including bus and shuttle routes, introduce valet parking, and open VIP areas. Despite the challenges, the company is optimistic about the future success of the casino. The redevelopment project has been a topic of interest for many and will continue to be closely monitored as it progresses.
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