The city is completing a deal to bring Thirteenth Floor Entertainment Group to the Old Joliet Prison.
Thirteenth Floor is a national operator of haunted houses, escape rooms and other horror-themed entertainment venues including touring events. Its venues include 13th Floor Haunted House in Melrose Park.
A development agreement for the former women’s prison at the Joliet Correctional Center is going to the Joliet City Council Prison Committee for review Monday.
“They want to be in there by Halloween 2020 and after that have year-round activities at the facility,” said Joliet Assistant City Attorney Chris Regis, who has been working on the agreement with Thirteenth Floor.
Thirteenth Floor would become the second haunted house operator to sign an agreement to open up in the women’s prison since Joliet took out a lease on the former prison to put it back to use. A previous deal with Evil Intentions, a haunted house operator in Elgin, fell through for lack of financing.
Thirteenth Floor would appear to have more wherewithal to convert the old prison building into an entertainment venue because of the size of the company.
Regis said Thirteenth Floor already has financing for the project, and the development agreement includes a letter of credit assuring that the company will open in Joliet.
“They’re going to give us a guarantee that this is going to happen,” he said.
Thirteenth Floor representatives could not be reached for comment Wednesday.