Q: What were the most popular video-gambling spots in C-U in the first half of 2019?
A: As measured by net terminal income — the amount of money put into a machine minus the amount paid out — the top 10 spots had their differences — a mix of businesses spread out over a wide area — but also similarities — all are close to major intersections or large retail areas, and all have the most number of terminals allowed by law: five.
Half of the list is in Champaign, but Urbana, Savoy and even an unincorporated part of the county made it.
Tops in the first half of 2019, as it has been before, is the Mach 1 truck stop (right), 902 W. Bloomington Ave., C, with net terminal income of $640,728.68. That owes to it being open 24 hours and along Interstate 74 at the Prospect Avenue exit.
No. 2 is also a Champaign truck stop, but on the other side of town — the Circle K at 4202 W. Springfield Ave., at the intersection of Springfield and Staley. Net terminal income: $481,818.24.
Urbana’s top spot, at No. 4, is one of seven gambling cafes on the list: Lacey’s Place, 110 E. University Ave., in a strip mall on the northwest corner of the Five Points intersection. Net terminal income: $370,154.94.
Just behind it, the only bar on the list: Pia’s, 1609 W. Springfield Ave., C. Net terminal income: $364,815.50.
Savoy checks in at No. 6 with Emma’s, in the Savoy Plaza off Dunlap Road, with a net terminal income of $357,151.37. And at No. 9, just outside the limits of northeast Urbana, at the intersection of Cunningham Avenue and Airport Road, is Black Jack’s, with net terminal income of $306,242.25.
An interactive map is below: