Philadelphia Casino Developers Unveil Specifics to State Gaming Regulators

Posted on: May 7, 2019, 10:01h. 

Last updated on: May 7, 2019, 10:01h.

Developers of the Philadelphia casino being built in the city’s stadium district provided state gaming regulators with an update on the project this week, and executives revealed they are expanding the investment.

Live! Philadelphia casino stadium district
Work is underway on the Philadelphia casino that will be adjacent to the city’s sports stadiums. (Image: Stadium Casino LLC)

Stadium Casino LLC, a subsidiary of Baltimore-based Cordish Companies – owners of the Live! brand – told the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) that the casino resort is on track for a late 2020 completion. The hotel gaming property located at 900 Packer Avenue is within walking distance of the city’s professional sports facilities: Citizens Bank Park, Lincoln Financial Field, and Wells Fargo Center.

Along with a 200-room hotel, Live! Casino Hotel Philadelphia will feature 2,200 slot machines, more than 150 table games and poker room, and sportsbook. The resort will be integrated with Cordish’s neighboring Xfinity Live! entertainment complex, which is adding a 3,500-seat esports stadium and new 10-story office space building.

The Cordish Companies originally planned to renovate a former Holiday Inn, but later opted to demolish the building and build from the ground up. The decision has ballooned the total investment from an original $450 million to $700 million.

License Renewal

Along with updating the PGCB on construction, Stadium Casino executives were before the gaming agency to make their case for renewal of its operating license.

Pennsylvania gaming law requires the PGCB to review each Category 2 (standalone casino) permit holder every five years. Issued in 2014, Stadium is up for renewal this year, though the company has yet to take a bet.

Stadium Casino LLC was originally a joint venture between Cordish and Greenwood Racing, the parent company to the Parx Casino near Philly in Bensalem. The two companies, however, struggled to come to mutual terms on a blueprint for the resort.

The standoff delayed the Philly stadium district casino opening by several years. Last fall, the PGCB signed off on Cordish buying out Greenwood and moving forward solely with the Live! Casino.

The PGCB is expected to renew the Category 2 casino license for another five years. Stadium reps told the PGCB that the casino will provide $2 billion in annual economic stimulus, and $100 million in city tax revenues over five years.

Satellite Progress

Live! Casino Hotel Philadelphia isn’t the only gaming development Cordish is currently undertaking in the Keystone State.

Stadium Casino LLC is additionally building a so-called satellite casino in Westmoreland County near Pittsburgh. The company won the mini-casino rights in the PGCB’s second auction round with a winning $40.1 million bid.

Construction is underway to transform a former Bon-Ton department store into a casino featuring up to 750 slot machines and 30 table games. In total, Stadium plans to invest $131 million on the venue that will be known as Live! Casino Westmoreland.

The 100,000-square-foot gaming space will be accompanied by restaurants and entertainment attractions. Stadium says the casino will create a $200 million annual economic impact in the area. The satellite is slated to open in 2020.