Illinois: Hard Rock Casino Rockford sees steady construction progress, eyes August completion date


Hard Rock Casino Rockford is banking on innovation as it pushes ahead with construction, aiming for an August 2024 completion date. The casino, spanning 180,000 square feet, is swiftly taking shape as construction crews work to meet deadlines.

Geno Iafrate, president of Hard Rock Casino Rockford, expressed optimism about the project’s timeline, noting minimal weather-related disruptions. “I think we maybe had one or two days where we were impacted by weather,” he told WREX.com. “But we were pouring concrete outside in the middle of December in Northern Illinois. When has that ever happened?”

The casino recently opened its doors to the public for a “Hard Hat” tour, offering a glimpse into the ongoing construction and providing updates on the project’s status. During the tour, visitors witnessed the intricate process of wall erection, flooring installation and electrical wiring.

Anticipation is high for the planned Labor Day weekend grand opening, with over a thousand slot machines, numerous table games, a sportsbook and various entertainment and dining options slated to replace the current construction site. The project has been a significant source of employment for the region, engaging nearly 1,200 construction workers, with plans to hire over 400 full- and part-time employees for the permanent casino.

One standout feature of the Hard Rock Casino Rockford is the “raised floor concept”, which allows wires and computing systems to run seamlessly beneath the floor surface. According to Iafrate, this innovative flooring offers unparalleled flexibility, enabling operators to reconfigure the space effortlessly.

Wendy Alsteen, Vice President of Finance at Hard Rock Casino Rockford, echoed Iafrate’s sentiments, highlighting the flooring’s convenience and versatility. Instead of drilling through concrete, it’s raised. And so we have the ability to be more flexible with things,” she told the cited publication.

Beyond its technological advancements, the casino aims to showcase Hard Rock’s renowned music memorabilia collection, with a particular focus on local legends such as Cheap Trick and Rick Nielsen. Additionally, a towering guitar sculpture, standing nearly 100 feet tall, will greet visitors upon arrival.