Illinois casinos: Developers selected for new suburban casinos

Illinois gambling regulators are placing their bets on two companies who are promising to build big, new suburban casinos.

One operator promises to build a posh palace of gambling in north suburban Waukegan

The other operator hopes to break ground soon at 175th and Halsted, just a few feet from an exit off of Interstate 80.  

It would be run by Wind Creek Hospitality. 

The president of Wind Creek Hospitality, Jay Dorris, spoke with FOX 32 via Zoom from Alabama Wednesday.

"We're ready to get going. As soon as we can break ground, we're looking at around two years from that time — 15 months for the casino, and the hotel will follow shortly thereafter," said Dorris.

The south suburban site straddles the border between Homewood and East Hazel Crest.  

A number of other nearby villages would share in the tax proceeds as well. 

The Waukegan casino would be operated by Las Vegas-based Full House Resorts, Inc., at the site of the defunct Fountain Square Shopping Mall. 

Gov. J.B. Pritzker was in downstate Williamson County Wednesday, celebrating the approval of a casino down there that will include hundreds of slot machines, gaming tables and a new hotel.

This expansion will bring in even more visitors, who can take advantage of the beauty and hospitality of southern Illinois. 


This will also mean more opportunity for working families across the region, creating 1,100 construction jobs and 330 permanent roles at this resort.

The building of these casinos were delayed for several years because of the pandemic. 

Only one of the six new land-based casinos approved by the general assembly is up and running, which is the Hard Rock in Rockford.  

A proposed casino in Chicago has yet to be approved by City Hall.