Experienced Team Plans Illinois Casino in Williamson County

Experienced Team Plans Illinois Casino in Williamson County
By Jake Perper

There is yet another Illinois casino proposal that could be brewing in the state.

On Monday, Walker’s Bluff Casino Resort team known as Elite Casino Resorts of Iowa filed for an application for an Illinois Casino License.

Last week the Williamson County board approved a $180 million expansion plan at the Walker’s Bluff location.

It could take a year’s time to gain approval by the Illinois Gaming Board and if it is indeed authorized then it would give Walker’s Bluff Casino Resort, LLC permission to construct a casino and resort at Walker’s Bluff in Southern Illinois.

“We are proud of this project, and all of the opportunities it represents,” Cynde Bunch, CEO and Founder of Walker’s Bluff told WSIL-TV Carterville Illinois. “Hundreds, perhaps thousands will benefit from jobs, training and local contracts, but we will ALL benefit from the satisfaction that we never gave up on Southern Illinois.”

Walker’s Bluff Casino and Resort Plans

The Southern Illinoisan reported last week that The Resort at Walker’s Bluff would feature a pair of brand new hotels, a water park that would run year-round, an entertainment venue and convention center, restaurants, spa and of course a casino for gamblers to play at.

This project brings an estimated 1,250 construction jobs, 726 permanent jobs, $15 million in local annual revenue, $34 million in local employment and $42 million in labor income in projections.

The Southern Illinois area would see a nice rise in their economy with this project if it indeed comes to fruition.

Last Tuesday Centerstone, a behavioral health care provider, moved forward with the addition of gambling treatment and intervention to the Southern Illinois location's services that are offered.

Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a gambling expansion back in June which added six casinos in the state, further expanded race-track gambling, legalized sports wagering and raises the limit for the amount of video gambling machines allowed.

Prior to signing the gambling expansion bill, Senate Bill 690, with the Williamson County casino addition, Pritzker said that he was planning to budget more money to fund gambling addiction services, according to ProPublica Illinois.

Established in 2008, Walker’s Bluff is a location that many expect would serve well as a casino and resort. Concept aerial sketches can be seen courtesy of KFVS 12 Missouri.

Now the residents will wait to see if this casino and resort gets going over the next couple of months to a year’s time. The plan is in place and with more time to plan and add funds, this can be the perfect casino to add to the state of Illinois and the tourist business that lies there.

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Jake Perper covers casino news for TopUSCasinos.com. A veteran of more than a decade of sports writing, he has covered the Chicago Bears for the Bears Backer blog, and his stories have also appeared on nfl.com, The Tampa Tribune, The Naples Daily News and Bleacher Report. He is also the leas scout for Prep Hoops Florida, based in Tampa.

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