Generous financial offer to the City of Waukegan shows the city and charitable causes will share in North Point Casino’s success
(WAUKEGAN, Illinois) – North Point Casino today formally presented their locally focused proposal for developing the city-owned Fountain Square lot into a regional entertainment destination bringing $1.39 billion in economic activity in the first five years of operation, creating over 2,200 jobs and offering millions to the city and local charitable causes that will balloon to even larger contributions as the North Point Casino meets its financial projections.
The presentation occurred at Waukegan’s Genesee Theatre where a public hearing on the proposed casino took place.
Under North Point Casino’s proposal, the City of Waukegan is offered $50 million to develop the casino. Of the $50 million, $22 million would be for the purchase of the city-owned Fountain Square site. An additional $28 million would be allocated to community projects at the city’s discretion, including, but not limited to, public education, childhood literacy, workforce training, arts and culture, community charitable causes and city improvements.
North Point Casino’s proposal ensures the community shares in the development’s continued success. In addition to the $50 million payment offer to the City, North Point Casino would offer Waukegan 2% of slot machine and table game adjusted gross revenue (AGR) over $130 million and 3% of AGR over $200 million.
“Our proposal’s objective is to invest locally and to invigorate Waukegan, which is evident by our partnerships with four locally owned restaurants, local union tradesmen and tradeswoman, the Lake County Black Chamber of Commerce and local minority-owned contractors,” said Michael Bond, a locally based North Point Casino partner. “North Point Casino compliments what’s already great about Waukegan and our robust charitable contribution plan means Waukegan families start seeing the positive impact of North Point Casino from the beginning.”
In the proposal, North Point Casino pledged to buy from local vendors and suppliers whenever possible, including the hiring of local union labor and minority crews, with a commitment not to seek waivers to get around minority hiring requirements.
“After reviewing competing proposals, we’re confident that the community will see that North Point Casino is the clear first choice for Waukegan,” said Bill Warner, CEO of Warner Gaming, which operates casinos in Iowa, New Mexico, Nevada and Washington. “North Point Casino is the only proposal that has agreements in place to use local, union labor, minority contractors and supports local small businesses to share in our success. We have outlined a significant charitable giving plan that can be used to enhance public education, workforce training, the arts or other community priorities. For a locally focused, experienced team that is ready to invest in the community and invigorate Waukegan, North Point Casino is the only option.”
North Point Casino’s site development plan includes:
- A $302 million Phase I project totaling 523,189 square feet of development and creating 2,232 permanent and construction jobs. Phase I would be completed with a 53,500 square foot casino, with a master-planned 81,500 square foot casino. Licensed for 2,000 gaming positions, North Point would have 1,160 gaming machines and 288 table game positions in Phase I.
- Phase I would include a 2-acre amphitheater with a capacity to thrill 4,000-7,000 fans. While Waukegan’s Genesee Theatre is a smaller, indoor, seated venue, with a capacity of about 2,400, North Point Casino’s outdoor non-seating amphitheater would attract different acts and entertainment, making certain that the local treasure wouldn’t be cannibalized.
- Phase I would debut with locally-owned restaurants operating within North Point Casino. This would include a local, well-known BBQ operator, Quonset Pizza, La Canoa and Austin’s, ensuring that local small businesses share in North Point Casino’s success.
- Master planned for a 1,024,340 square foot development, the entertainment destination will be built to include:
- A AAA Four Diamond hotel with 200 rooms, a spa/salon, fitness center, coffee bar and rooftop pool
- Additional gaming positions to maximize the 2,000-gaming position license obtained.
- A 14,000 square foot conference center that includes an 8,000 square foot ballroom and 6,000 square feet of break out meeting space.
- A retail district, second parking garage to accommodate visitors from around the region, along with an 800-seat indoor/outdoor entertainment venue for local and regional talent.
North Point Casino Partners include Bond, Warner Gaming, Clairvest Group and Prashant Gupta. Clairvest has made 33 investments in the regional gaming space and Bill Warner has been involved in 12 ground-up developments, making North Point Casino by far the most experienced bidder. All partners have held Illinois gaming licenses or have applications in progress before the Illinois Gaming Board. This further demonstrates North Point Casino’s readiness to execute.
Unlike proposals from some other bidders, North Point doesn’t have other casino interests in the region. Unlike other bidders with competitive casinos in the region, North Point will have every incentive to build the casino quickly to maximize returns for the city and taxpayers and to compete with neighboring casinos that don’t support Waukegan.
In addition, North Point is the only bidder that has proactively sought and secured local businesses to operate within the casino and local union tradesmen and tradeswomen to build the casino. These factors show why North Point Casino is the clear win for Waukegan.