Philadelphia investor Ira Lubert has won the four-casino auction category for the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, securing the victory with a winning $10,000,101 bid number.
The minimum tender for the sole licence up for grabs was $7.5 m, with Lubert seeing off one unidentified bidder ‘s offer. The proposed site for the proposed facility is located in a 15-mile radius area with a central point in Central County’s Unionville Borough.
Lubert is now expected to pay the Commonwealth bid price within two business days, and then has up to six months to request a Category Four slot machine licence application.
The application would include the precise location of the proposed mini-casino, considered to be Nittany Mall, as well as specific plans and details on the planned development schedule, facilities , work estimates and other related information. After the application has been submitted and decided to be complete, the PGCB will post information about the project to the public.
This new auction was necessary after the state regulator refused a category four slot machine licence to a prior auction winner, Mount Airy Casino Resorts.
Lubert is currently approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board in connection with an ownership interest with Rivers Casino Pittsburgh operator Holdings Acquisitions Co.
A four-slot machine licence category requires the company to operate between 300 and 750 slot machines, as well as seeking approval to initially operate up to 30 table games for an extra $2.5 m fee with the option to add an extra ten within the first year of operation.
Four other related licences with three of those under construction were awarded in 2018 auctions but only The Cordish Companies’ Live! This year’s Casino Pittsburgh’s set to debut.
The project is projected to produce $188 million in annual economic impact, with an additional $148 million from construction, including around 960 direct and indirect construction jobs, and 500 permanent new jobs for local and regional residents in the area.