Rush Street’s New Casino In Chicago Could Bring In Over 7,000 Jobs

Written By Nicholaus Garcia on April 8, 2022
To Rejuvenate Neighborhood Rush Street Offers Up Chicago Casino Plan

The final round of meetings between Chicago residents and casino operators ended with Rush Street Gaming and its vision for a new neighborhood in the city. 

If endorsed by the city, the Rivers 78 casino would be located in the South Loop a transform 62-acres of land into a new vibrant destination. 

Chicago casino waterfront plans designed by Rush Street

Rush Street’s plan involves building an entire neighborhood from scratch anchored by casino gaming. The total cost for the casino comes in at $1.6 billion, which is part of the overall $7 billion development. 

The casino is expected to have a mixture of slot machines and table games. Similar to proposals from Bally’s and Hard Rock, there was no mention of Illinois online casino games

Related Midwest President Curt Bailey said his team has been working for several years on something “transformational.”

“We’ve been working for the last six years designing a place that our kids can visit and be proud of, a place that we can all be proud of when you look back in 20 years and see what we’ve built. Those objectives call for something big, they call for something transformational.”

Bailey continued:

“This is where we’re different. We’re creating an entire neighborhood from the ground up, with a casino already integrated from the beginning. The fact is that the casino, on just two percent of the square footage, makes everything else possible. It is the engine that transforms this giant dirt lot today into a vibrant neighborhood. And we know that we’re the team to do it.”

In addition to a state-of-the-art casino, the plans also include:

  • 1,000-foot observation tower
  • A riverwalk area for live entertainment
  • 11-acres of new parkland
  • Restaurants and bars
  • An innovation district
  • Housing with a percentage to be built as affordable units

Chicago city appeal

Part of the appeal for city officials is the number of jobs projected by Rush Street and Related Midwest.

According to the presentation, the casino and entertainment district could create between 3,400 and 4,400 construction jobs and almost 3,500 permanent casino jobs

Rush Street also projected its casino could generate $174.2 million in tax revenue annually, the smallest amount of the three proposals. 

Tim Drehkoff, who will be Rush Street’s new CEO on May 1, said the company excels at providing high-end gaming in urban areas. 

“Why is Rush Street the right operator for this community? First, we only develop casinos in urban markets. It’s all we do, and this experience matters. We have a community-centered approach that drives everything we do.”

Drehkoff also said if approved, a temporary casino in the form of a docked cruise ship would have 1,000 gaming positions and be up and running in 18 months

Photo by Shutterstock.com
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Nicholaus Garcia

Nick has had stints in Chicago and Washington, D.C., writing about politics, financial markets, and sports betting. He graduated from Texas Tech University and completed his master's degree in journalism at Columbia College Chicago.

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