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Old Posted Jul 29, 2020, 11:05 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2018
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Originally Posted by ardecila View Post
Interesting... the trick is convincing people to walk across the Stevenson trench. If they can do something to the bridge on Michigan (wider sidewalks, landscaping, etc) to lure people down from Motor Row than I think it could be a great site. I have my usual concerns about urban design, but I think this site could allow for something closer to the traditional casino design with plenty of on-site parking, big gaming floors and a hotel tower. Just need to arrange those elements in an urban way.

Motor Row was always tossed around as an option, but it would be very challenging to acquire enough land there and deal with historic preservation issues... Mercy is a ready-made site that is basically a blank slate. I doubt the alderman would be on board, and there are other political challenges to redeveloping these sites... Michael Reese has taken over 10 years to get off the dime, and they still haven't broken ground. I imagine the same folks who protested Lincoln Yards will also come out against a casino on this site, if they think the casino factored into the decision to close the hospital.
I think the Casino would lure people on its own, but landscaping on Michigan would help bring casino people to Motor Row, which would be nice. Maybe even a nice plaza with a small outdoor entertainment space might make sense, although that would be costly (as would an infill Green Line site at 26th street, which this could catalyze). I bet a casino could actually use the high-rise portion of the hospital as a hotel if it wanted too though.
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