Permanent facility needs site plan approval before breaking ground

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Tough Competition for Greektown

by Sharon Baker
2006-06-04 11:42:00
Permanent facility needs site plan approval before breaking ground

Greektown Casino remains hanging in the air while MGM Grand Detroit and Motor City casinos work energetically to build new permanent hotel-gaming complexes. The delays could cost Greektown Casino millions of dollars in income. Both companies have already started signing up conventions and events at the new facilities for 2008 and beyond.

Motor City broke ground on its $275 million permanent facility late last year and expects to open by late 2007 or early 2008. It will use its current temporary casino as part of the structure. The $765 million MGM permanent facility, the only one being built from the ground up, broke ground earlier this year and is expected to open in early 2008.

Greektown still expects to open its permanent facility by 2008, but is almost certain to trail its competitors. Greektown is still at least several weeks away from receiving site plan approval from the Detroit City Planning Commission. After that, the Detroit City Council must approve its expansion. Each phase has the potential for more delays.

As part of the development agreement with the city of Detroit, the three casinos agreed to build 400-room hotels. The city added a time penalty that if the hotels will not be opened before September 2008, the city can assess each casino that does not make the deadline an additional one percent on revenues in each of the next three years.

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