The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority filed its application Monday to build a $550 million casino in the Catskills at the former Concord Resort Hotel in Thompson, N.Y.
The project calls for a 252-room hotel; performance venues for music, comedy and lives shows; and 52,000 square feet of casino space, which will include 2,100 "gaming positions," meaning places to stand or sit and gamble at a slot machine or a table game.
The tribe is partnering with an Upstate New York developer, The Cappelli Organization, to build on 60 acres of a 140.3-acre resort in the Borscht Belt.
Monday was the filing deadline for companies competing to get one of four licenses to operate a casino in Upstate New York. Sixteen companies submitted applications: five in the Capital region; eight in the Catskills and Hudson Valley; and three in the Eastern Southern Tier.
"Sullivan County is poised to play a central role in this new industry and develop the type of destination that will make expanded gaming a success in New York," Mitchell Grossinger Etess, CEO of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, said in a statement.
"In addition, our partnership with the Cappelli Organization creates a number of exciting opportunities to become a catalyst for revitalization of the overall Catskills Region. We believe in Sullivan County and are confident that our premier brand and unmatched guest service and hospitality can stimulate its long awaited revival," he said.
Building Mohegan Sun at the Concord is expected to create at least 4,500 construction jobs and more than 2,100 permanent jobs when the casino is operating.
The Mohegan Sun project would be designed and built by Marnell Companies LLC, developers of gaming resorts in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, N.J., including the Borgata Hotel Casino, the Mirage, the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas, and Atlantic City and Caesars Palace Las Vegas.
"We have been working with Mohegan Sun and Concord for several years to bring good jobs to Sullivan County", Todd Diorio, president of the Hudson Valley Building and Construction Trades Council, said in a statement. "We support the casino application of Mohegan Sun at Concord and Look forward to a major union construction project in Sullivan County that will create thousands of jobs and regional economic development Sullivan County desperately needs."
Town of Thompson Supervisor Bill Reiber said in a statement, "Our area needs the jobs and tax revenue that will come with such a high-profile investment in our tourism industry. We are looking forward to showing New York and the world just how beautiful and exciting a trip to the Catskills can be."
New York's casino applicants are competing for one of four licenses in three regions: the Albany-Saratoga Springs area; the Hudson Valley-Catskills; and the eastern Southern Tier, stretching from Lake Ontario to the Pennsylvania border. Each region will get at least one license and one region will get two. The winners are expected to be chosen in the fall by New York's Gaming Facility Location Board.
Mohegan Sun delivered 20 copies of its application to the New York State Gaming Commission in 20 boxes, totaling 10,000 pages of documents.
Separately, Mohegan Sun is competing for a casino license in Massachusetts where the sole license to operate a casino in Greater Boston has come down to Wynn Resorts and the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority. However, the state's highest court ruled this month that a petition to repeal the 2011 legislation allowing casinos in Massachusetts will be allowed to go to a vote in November. So, Massachusetts voters could erase the possibility of a casino in that state.
Back in the Catskills, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, which operates Foxwoods Resort Casino, announced in mid-June it had scrapped plans to redevelop Grossinger's, an iconic Borscht Belt venue not far from The Concord. The tribal nation and its local partner, Muss Development, said it could not get the financial backing needed for a casino in Sullivan County because New York is allowing casinos in Orange County, which is closer to the lucrative New York City market.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun