Cherokee hold groundbreaking for new casino
Posted October 15, 2013
MURPHY, N.C. — North Carolina's Cherokee Indians are moving ahead with plans to build a second casino.
Tribal leaders held a ceremonial kick-off Tuesday outside Murphy for the $110 million project.
They say the new casino and hotel will create 900 jobs and inject as much as $39 million in wages into the western North Carolina mountains.
The new casino and hotel is owned by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians but operated by Caesars Entertainment Corp.
"Our winning partnership with Caesars Entertainment gives us a proven track record in the gaming industry," Principal Chief Michell Hicks said in a statement. "This is an ambitious project, but we are confident that it will be a success for our customers, our tribe and for the surrounding community."
The casino will feature 60,000 square feet of gaming space with slots and traditional table games, a 300-room full service hotel and a variety of dining options, officials said.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation is building a new bridge and making other improvements to improve access to the casino, which is about an hour's drive southwest of the existing Harrah's Cherokee resort.
Earlier this year, the tribe completed a $650 million expansion of that casino, which draws an estimated 3.6 million visitors annually.