Mayor Rahm Emanuel mulls port district land as Chicago casino location

Mayor Rahm Emanuel said on Tuesday that a port district side on the Far Southeast side could be a favourable location for a Chicago casino.

If state lawmakers allow the state to open a casino in the state. Talking to an Editorial board, Emanuel talked about his love-hate relationship with the idea of casino but he said that if it is to be built, it should be built away from the Loop and McCormick Place.

The land currently harbours Harborside Golf Course with some terminals nearby on Lake Calumet and it is located at 11th Street exit on the Bishop Ford Freeway.

The land is a joint city-state entity which is owned by the port district. “If you go down to the port authority where the golf course is, you will see that there is enough land there for a hotel and a casino,” Emanuel said.

“That is going to be big economic boom for the Southeast Side of the city.”

These remarks come after he gave a speech to alderman on his recommendations to address the city’s pension funding shortfalls going forward. Ald. Sue Sadlowsk-Garza whose 10th Ward included the port district site said, “We have been working on this project for quite some time now. I am very grateful that it appears the 10th ward is being considered a final location for the new casino.”

“People go to Orlando for playing, they go for gambling in Vagas and they come to Chicago for doing business. Putting a casino nearby would actually undermine a selling point,” Emanuel said.

Many casino bills have been introduced and have failed to make a cut, but Emanuel said that Govt elect JB Pritzker may have a window. 

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