Chicago’s mayor has released a detailed summary of the 11 responses to the city’ Request for Information for the Chicago casino, providing an inside look at the first step in the planning process to develop and operate a casino.
The information provided will be considered in the development of the city’s Request for Proposal which is expected in the first quarter of 2021, depending upon the pandemic and its impact on capital markets for new development projects at that time.
“The many perspectives and insights captured in this RFI are indicative of the excitement and anticipation of this once in a lifetime project,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement. “Thanks to the responses of nearly a dozen RFI respondents, we are not only one step closer to bringing the long-awaited Chicago casino to life, but have the critical information we need to ensure this project will be a success.”
The summary of responses provides key insights into how potential operators view a temporary casino, temporary and permanent casino locations including optimal acreage and factors to consider with respect to site selection, and amenities to complement the casino including hotels, food and beverage outlets, retail, parking and other amenities such as Chicago’s existing entertainment offerings.
Additionally, respondents provided feedback on how the city could assist casino developers, community engagement, the RFP process and estimated construction timelines. All respondents agreed that the current COVID-19 pandemic will have no or minimal impact on the finally constructed casino facility given the timeline for selecting and licensing a casino operator and construction of the casino complex. Respondents were also in alignment that community engagement and support of the casino were integral to its success.
The respondents included Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives, Christiansen Capital Advisors, Development Management Associates (DMA), DL3 Realty, Hard Rock International, JDL, MGM Resorts International, MGM Growth Properties, R2 Companies, Rush Street Gaming and Related Midwest, and Wynn Resorts.