Summary: Mount Airy Casino Resort has decided to make Big Beaver their home when it comes to their new mini-casino venue.
Since last year, changes have been taking place in the state of Pennsylvania regarding the gaming industry. A gaming package was passed into law that would create new gaming options, including satellite casinos. These mini-gaming venues will be home to slot and table gaming, but in smaller quantities than the larger full-scale casinos. Several existing operators applied for licensing for a mini-casino, including Mount Airy Casino Resort. Located in Mount Pocono, the gaming operator has now chosen a location for their mini site.
Last week, plans were filed by Mount Airy with the state’s Gaming Control Board for their satellite casino. The company plans on turning 100 acres in the area of Big Beaver into a mini casino/ entertainment complex. The project has been titled Mount Airy Pittsburgh.
A mini casino license was given to Mount Airy after they had the highest bid during a February auction hosted by the Gaming Control Board. The winning big came in at $21,888,888.88. The plans submitted show the new smaller casino will be located 15 miles from the New Castle region, which is where Interstate 376 meets the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
A mini casino in the state can be home to as many as 750 slot games and 30 table games. It was recently made known that such venues may also soon be able to offer sports betting thanks to recent changes in federal law. However, for such a venue to be able to offer sport betting as well, an additional $10 million would have to be paid to the state for licensing.
Mount Airy does have plans to create as sportsbook but it will be located at their main casino, the Mount Airy Casino Resort. The parent company of the Mount Airy has signed a deal with The Stars Group to launch an online poker site branded with the PokerStars name as well as an online and mobile sports betting offering under the BetStars brand. No word as to if this partnership might extend to the mini casino as well for sports betting in the future.
Looking to Other States
The site for the proposed mini casino is located near the state of Ohio which would help the venue to bring in even more customers. The facility will be located close to Youngstown, which is home to around 500,000 people. The only gaming in the area is the Hollywood Gaming at Mahoning Valley Racetrack, but they only offer video lottery gaming. The new mini casino will offer more and be a big draw among residents of that region.
Mount Airy has plans to begin groundbreaking in early 2019 and then open late in the year. There are still several steps the company has to complete before they will even be able to get started with the process.
Reportedly, the Board is still reviewing the application of the company and will make their findings public in the near future. A hearing for public comment will then have to take place in Big Beaver. The meeting date for this hearing has yet to be revealed. Mount Airy has completed a study on traffic as well as completed a report on the impact that the facility will have on the locals. Beaver County officials are now set to begin discussing workforce development and educational partners involving the project. The area seems to be very welcoming of the facility coming to the region.