Whatever happened to ... Old Chicago ...

Whatever happened to ... Old Chicago mall in Bolingbrook?

There are 90 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Mar 12, 2009, titled Whatever happened to ... Old Chicago mall in Bolingbrook?. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

It was an amusement park that was supposed to put Bolingbrook on the map. Instead the Old Chicago mega-mall and amusement park went bankrupt a year after it opened in 1975, closed in 1980 and was demolished six ...

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Newport, KY

#3 Mar 12, 2009
Pick up a copy of the movie "The Fury" with Kirk Douglas. A major scene was filmed in the amusement park area.

Aurora, IL

#4 Mar 12, 2009
I was in high school when Old Chicago opened, and at first it seemed pretty popular and crowded (read: wait in long lines for rides). Then the next year, Marriott's Great America opened, and that was that.

My last visit to Old Chicago was over Xmas break, I think late 1979. It wasn't busy at all, and my friends enjoyed being able to ride the rides without any waiting. After several rounds of bumper cars, though, I had to watch myself when I got onto the Stevenson for the ride home.

Roselle, IL

#5 Mar 12, 2009
I remember going there in 1978, it was completely dead. Maybe 5 really lame shops left and no wait for the couple of fun rides. The only fun thing was the shooting galleries. The guns used lights to set the targets off so if you set off a flashbulb, all the targets would go off at once.

United States

#6 Mar 12, 2009
Did you see me there? I was hanging over the edge of a garbage can. Should have never went on that ride that spins in a circle.

United States

#7 Mar 12, 2009
I can see the Willis Tower when I go to Chicago.

Indio, CA

#8 Mar 12, 2009
My wife and I went there once or twice in the first year it opened. We weren't very impressed then.
Born in 63

United States

#9 Mar 12, 2009
Does anyone else remember that the air was kind of odd in the building. Whenever I was there it felt like the air was old and lacked oxygen. After the newness wore off I remember the place as stuffy and deserted.
Robert J Reece

University Park, IL

#10 Mar 12, 2009
Grew up in Romeoville. I knew we were almost home when I saw the dome. The reason why the placed closed was because everything in that mall around it was WAY TOO Expensive!

But I loved doing donuts in the empty parking lot during the winters, after it closed down...

San Jose, CA

#12 Mar 12, 2009
Opened 1975
Closed 1980/81
Razed 1986

Bankrupt Trib

Champaign, IL

#13 Mar 12, 2009
Get over it, it's gone.

What a garbage dump.

Chicago, IL

#14 Mar 12, 2009
I used to shoot out windows of cars in the parking lot, and occasionally slash tires on dozens of cars in the lot. Nothing else to do back then! Sorry if you were one of them.

United States

#16 Mar 12, 2009
Went there with my dad in '75 or '76. They were having an antique beer can fest. We happened by the auditorium and none other than Rick Nelson was performing. Not many people listening to him and his excellent band perform hit after hit. I remember walking right up to the ground level stage, accidentally getting too close and saying hi to RN. He smiled, I went back to my seat.

Mexico, Mexico

#17 Mar 13, 2009
Ramones concert, October 20, 1979, now that's a great memory!

Mexico, Mexico

#18 Mar 13, 2009
Frank wrote:
It was put into a suburb that was filed with people, that had no business owning houses. It was mainly minorities, who were given no money down mortgages and we know how sucessful that is. Thats what caused it to fail. Their were many foreclosures on properties that these people had no business getting mortgages. Its like the problems we have now-with minorities that have no business owning houses. Let them foreclose on the property!
Yeah, Frank, I guess "their" were many foreclosures, maybe the people you're talking about were uneducated Americans like you who can't even use "there" own language, ya think?

Chicago, IL

#19 Mar 13, 2009
Hopefully it will be back up and running when Obama turns things around

Glendale Heights, IL

#20 Mar 13, 2009
Old Chicago was also a very bad beer.

Just an American

Tampa, FL

#21 Mar 13, 2009
I remember passing by on I-57 and begging my parents to go there. We never went, my Mom said it wasn't very nice. It was always Santa's Village and Great American for us. I still wish I would have at least gotten to see it once.
I must be getting old

Kansas City, MO

#22 Mar 13, 2009
Wow, I think about Old Chicago when I am in town and driving along I-55. I VAGUELY remember taking my wife out there for fun and some windowshopping.I suspect the fact there wasn't much out there,especially housing,was a contributing factor to its failure.Meantime, Mall of America in suburban Minneapolis continues on,17 years running.
Sir W-T-F

United States

#23 Mar 13, 2009
That place was a joke. I went there once and that was enough for me.

New York, NY

#24 Mar 13, 2009
I remember Old Chicago had a great haunted house. Those are hard to find these days. I also remember all the empty stores, but I was a kid and wasn't there to shop. I wish there was still something like this in the Chicago area for my son.

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