Bally’s Wins Prestigious Mayoral Pick For Flagship Casino Property In Chicago

The future $1.7 billion world class resort – with its planned Grand Opening in the 2026 calendar year – was approved by City Council members 41-7 in late May.

Rhode Island casino, gaming, and entertainment behemoth Bally’s Corporation was recently chosen by Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot as the sole winning bidder for a 2026 world-class casino and resort within the River West district of the Windy City.

On Wednesday, May 25th, Chicago City Council members voted 41-7 to approve a $1.7 billion Bally’s casino facility in the River West neighborhood. The issue now moves to state gaming officials (the Illinois Gaming Board) for the next step in the approval process, which could come as soon as this calendar year.

Once built, the Bally’s casino will feature a retail sportsbook to go along with several other properties within the city limits that offer retail sports betting.

The process had been temporarily stalled following a May 23rd Committee meeting, but was ultimately approved on the municipal level without much pushback. 

The 2026 grand opening of the flagship Bally’s casino & resort property is slated to take place where the Chicago Tribune publishing plant is currently located. However, there are plans for a 2023 “temporary” Bally’s casino property inside the historic Medinah Temple building within the Near North Side of Chicago.

Promises made by Bally’s to employ a high percentage of local labor, engage with the greater Chicago area community, and provide millions of dollars in annual payments to the city were all integral in Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s decision to declare Bally’s Corporation as the final winner in a drawn-out, occasionally heated, and competitive proposal process. A process that included bids by Rush Street Gaming (via Rivers) and Hard Rock International.

Once in place, the casino/sportsbook (along with other retail locations in the Windy City) could bring much of the gaming revenue that currently goes to Indiana “back home” to Illinois  

Chicago Mayor Lightfoot Not Buying In To Critics’ Concerns Over Selection Process

During a May 5th press conference in which Mayor Lori Lightfoot spoke and answered questions, multiple members of the on-site press inquired about the selection process, saying critics were concerned with its speedy conclusion.

However, Mayor Lightfoot responded by pointing out the months-long process (starting with the city issuing RPs – or Requests for Proposals back in April 2021) that included plans submitted by Bally’s, Hard Rock International, and Rush Street Gaming (d.b.a. Rivers). 

There’s nothing about this that has moved quickly,” the Mayor told ABC 7 Chicago’s Craig Wall on May 5th. ”In every process there are winners and losers… and some of what you’re hearing is people who staked their allegiance with proposals that didn’t make it through to the finalists. And it’s typical of folks that weren’t successful to attack the process.” 

Indiana Basketball Wagers Reign Supreme In April 2022

The Hoosier State recorded a total of $360 million in legal, real money sports bets during the month of April 2022. Retailers and operators garnered an “Adjusted Gross Revenue” from sports betting wagers in excess of $28.6 million (for those wagers that were able to be settled during April).

Over $129 million of total April handle was derived exclusively from basketball wagers, with another $91.3 million in real money sports bets going toward parlays. Baseball attracted an impressive $56.7 million in total wagers during the month, as the MLB regular season began and collegiate teams prepared for the postseason regionals.

More than $2.7 million in funds were added to Indiana state coffers in the form of sports betting tax revenue during April 2022, and Indiana sports bettors have placed over $3.8 billion in legal sports wagers this calendar year (according to figures published by the Indiana Gaming Commission.

Boston Celtics Versus Golden State Warriors In 2022 NBA Finals

Indiana sportsbooks are currently offering a wide variety of incentives to new customers inside the Hoosier State who are interested in trying their luck on picking a winner for the 2022 NBA Finals.

The Boston Celtics outlasted the Miami Heat in a 7-game series in the Eastern Conference, while the Golden State Warriors easily finished off the Memphis Grizzlies in the Western Conference championship series.

Game #1 of the 2022 NBA Finals will tip-off on Thursday, June 2nd, at Chase Center in San Francisco, as legal Indiana mobile sportsbook apps prepare to offer real money wagers to in-state customers ranging from straight bets and point spreads to picking the eventual 2022 NBA Finals championship team.

If basketball isn’t your favorite sports to bet on, Indiana customers will be glad to find out that they can also use mobile sportsbook apps to place real money bets on the NCAA Baseball postseason as well as other sports, including (but not limited to) mixed martial arts, golf, boxing, tennis, motorsports, and much more.

Sign-up for a new account through HoosierStateBets to ensure you get the best deal as a sports betting customer in the legal Indiana sports betting market (must be at least 21 years old to participate).

Real money online sports betting is only a few taps or clicks away for Indiana customers using a smart device or personal computer. Get special perks when registering your account and making a first time deposit using our HoosierStateBets exclusive bonus links.