he Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board voted Wednesday unanimously to award a license to Stadium Casino, a division of The Cordish Companies, to construct a Category 4 casino, called Live! Casino Pittsburgh, in Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County.
The award concludes a process the Board began on January 24, 2018 when Stadium Casino, LLC secured a 15-mile radius area in which it could locate a $150 million casino with a winning bid of $40,100,005 at the second Category 4 auction held by the Board.
Subsequently, the Board conducted an in-depth background investigation of the application along with the collection of public input from citizens, community groups and public officials at a hearing held in Hempfield Township on December 5, 2018. Yesterday, prior to its vote, the Board held a final licensing hearing in which representatives of Stadium Casino were questioned by Board members about the project.
A Category 4 Slot Machine License permits the company to operate between 300 and 750 slot machines. The entity could also petition for permission to initially operate up to 30 table games for an additional fee of $2.5 million with the capability of adding an additional 10 tables games after its first year of operation. The table games certification was also approved yesterday by the Board.
According to information presented on Wednesday, Live! Casino Pittsburgh will renovate a 100,000 square foot area at the Westmoreland Mall; operate 750 slot machines; open with 30 table games with an anticipated expansion to 40 tables; and offer dining and entertainment venues. The Live! facility will be part of the popular 1.3-million-square-foot Westmoreland Mall development, located directly off Route 30, approximately 30 miles from downtown Pittsburgh.
The project is targeting a 2020 opening. When that occurs, Live! Casino Pittsburgh expects to employ 500 persons with full or part-time jobs. The project is expected to generate $188 million in annual economic impact, with an additional $148 million in economic impact from construction, including approximately 960 direct and indirect construction jobs.
In addition, the project will create numerous construction and operations vendor opportunities for local, minority, women-owned, and veteran-owned businesses, along with considerable support for local charities and non-profits.
"We're very excited and honored to have been awarded the license by the Gaming Control Board and thank them for their consideration," said Joe Weinberg, Managing Partner, The Cordish Companies. "We look forward to working with State and local officials, and the entire community as we move forward with development of a true world-class destination that will attract people from throughout the region for a unique gaming and entertainment experience."
Cordish Gaming Group continues to build upon the prominence of the Live! Casino brand in the Mid-Atlantic region with the development of two new gaming and entertainment destinations. In addition to the Pittsburgh market, a new Live! Casino & Hotel in currently under construction in the City of Philadelphia, in the heart of the Stadium District. In a related matter during the hearing, Stadium Casino also received its Category 2 license renewal from the Board for the Philadelphia project.
This is the second Category 4 license award by the Gaming Control Board. In June of this year, an award was approved for Penn National Gaming’s facility in Berks County. Three of the projects that won auctions to apply are pending.