ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Numbers from the Illinois Gaming Board show over 463,000 people visited the temporary Rockford Casino: A Hard Rock Opening Act in 2022, bringing in $54.7 million.

Of that, $8 million went to the state and $3 million went to Rockford region, with the city taking a majority share in a split with Winnebago County, Loves Park, and Machesney Park.

The permanent casino will be built on the site of the former Clock Tower Resort, at 7801 E. State Street at the I-90 exit ramp.

As part of Rockford’s plan to bring a Hard Rock Casino to the city, a temporary Rockford Casino: A Hard Rock Opening Act opened at the former Giovanni’s restaurant, 610 N Bell School Rd.

The Rockford City Council voted in favor of the plan from Hard Rock International in October 2019, after considering proposals from the downtown Rock River West Casino Group and Forest City Casino.

Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a gaming expansion bill into law on June 28, 2019, allowing a casino to be built in six areas in Illinois, including Rockford.

Hard Rock International Chairman Jim Allen said the $310 million casino project would create 1,200 permanent jobs and another 1,000 during construction.