$30M Chicago esports arena being considered for Near South Side

COVID-19 pandemic has stirred interest in esports

ByABC 7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Thursday, March 18, 2021
$30M Chicago esports stadium being considered for Near South Side
A $30M esports arena is being considered for Chicago's Near South Side Thursday.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago city planners are set to review a proposal Thursday for a new $30 million arena on the Near South Side.

The venue would be used for esports, where professional video game players compete.

The proposed building would occupy more than 100,000 square feet, and it would be able to host more than 1,000 people.

RELATED: Illinois Institute of Technology adds more esports scholarships as coronavirus pandemic jumpstarts interest

The coronavirus pandemic has jumpstarted interest in esports and the Illinois Institute of Technology has noticed.

"Surge" Esports Stadium would be located in the 2500-block of South Wabash Avenue. The proposal for the arena was put in front of the Chicago Plan Commission by a company called Smash Interactive.

The Chicago Park District's first esports tournament took place in December.

The COVID-19 pandemic has jumpstarted interest in esports.