Fashion Outlets of Chicago opens for business, free toll - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Fashion Outlets of Chicago opens for business, free toll at Balmoral

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Photo courtesy of FOX 32's Lisa Chavarria. Photo courtesy of FOX 32's Lisa Chavarria.
ROSEMONT, Ill. (FOX 32 News) -

It's a big day for shopping in the greater Chicago area! Rosemont's Fashion Outlets of Chicago opened Thursday morning.

SEE: Fashion Outlets of Chicago to open in Rosemont, to bring 2K jobs

Governor Pat Quinn and Rosemont Mayor Bradley Stevens were on hand for the 10 a.m. ribbon cutting to help kick off the grand opening. Shoppers were greeted on the outside with the sounds of the Leyden High School Band from Franklin Park.

The 530,000 sq. ft. mall has 130 stores, featuring some of the world's top designers, are represented at the outlet mall. Hundreds of people poured inside, looking for deals at the outlets.

The Fashion Outlets of Chicago is being called the first fully enclosed outlet mall to be built in more than 20 years, featuring outlets from Nike, the Gap to Barney's and Bloomingdale's.

Some stores saw lines out the doors as customers grabbed deals.

"It's really nice," shopper Kimberly Crosby-McCoy says. "We don't have to travel to New York to go to their outlet mall that's similar to this one. So, this is really nice."

Aside from providing people with an outlet mall closer to Chicago it's also a big boost for the local economy.

"This is a special day for Illinois," Quinn announced. "2,000 people didn't have a job yesterday and have a job today thanks to Fashion Outlets of Chicago."

Officials hope the mall's proximity to O'Hare Airport will not only bring in local shoppers, but worldwide buyers. At guest services inside of the mall, you can check your bags, or you can leave your bags for a short amount of time for just a small fee. You can also print your boarding passes if you plan on shopping a little bit, before you plan to fly out of O'Hare Airport.

A shuttle will also take airport passengers to and from the airport, giving people another way to spend locally before they hit the skies.

To celebrate the mall's grand opening and to keep traffic flowing, the village of Rosemont is paying for customers' tolls at the Balmoral Avenue exit ramp.

If you're going, officials said your I-Pass will be charged at first, but then you'll get a credit.

Don't worry if you don't have an I-Pass - you won't get a ticket in the mail.

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