After a record-setting month of March, the Illinois legal sports betting market continues to grow with the announcement of a new casino.
The location of this new casino in Chicago is a big deal not only locally but regionally. It seems that there is no stopping Illinois as they continue to solidify its standing as one of the gambling hubs of America.
March Was Record-Setting Month for Illinois
The month of March was very profitable for both operators and lawmakers alike. The Illinois Gaming Board (IGC) reported a $971 million handle for the month of March.
That represents a record for the state and one of the highest totals ever recorded for a single month. That puts Illinois in the same category as Nevada, New York, and New Jersey.
Those have been the big boys in terms of handling and Illinois certainly has the financial power to be up there.
That was in the theory of course but the month of March is proof that it could and should be a reality for the state.
Did Basketball Help Illinois in March?
Even though the Chicago Bulls have been really poor during the second half of the NBA season, basketball was still a driving force in terms of achieving this record handle.
March Madness and the NBA is where the majority of the nearly five million bets were made during the month.
The IGC reported gross revenue of just under $62 million which should be music to the ears of lawmakers. State taxes totaled over $9 million dollars due to the huge month-over-month increase.
Revenue went up by 70% while handle saw a 43% jump. It’s interesting to note that parlay wagers accounted for more than half of the revenue generated.
That seems to be a trend that should it continue, would mean a lot of consistent revenue.
Chicago Set to Get a New Casino
Having a casino in the largest city in the Midwest is a big deal. Chicago is one of the most financially powerful cities in the country and is a hub for the region.
Bally’s was awarded the sole casino license and was tabbed to build a $1.74-billion-dollar casino. Reports indicate that the casino will be located at the Tribune Publishing Center in the River West area.
It could take a few years for construction to be completed so in the meantime, they will open a temporary casino at the former location of Bloomingdale’s Home Store.
New Casino: New Tourists
The Bally’s project, when completed, will bring a lot of tourists to the Chicago area. Not that they need more than they already have but for the state, the taxable revenue is sure to skyrocket once the casino is fully operational.
Along with the casino, there will be a three-thousand-seat theater. The Chicago Riverwalk will also get an extension that comes with a bridge for pedestrians and a hotel with a reported 500 rooms.
Players across the country that don’t yet have access to legalized sports betting via mobile, can go to OddsTrader once this changes.