A casino and hotel project that’s long been in the works has cleared its latest legal hurdle, meaning the project could begin construction in South Philly as early as next year.
Live! Casino and Hotel Philadelphia, proposed for South Philly near all of the stadiums, is partially owned by Watche "Bob" Manoukian, who also owns a casino in Bensalem. But until Thursday, Pennsylvania had an ownership restriction on casinos that prohibited owners from having stake in more than one casino.
Local would-be competitor SugarHouse Casino had filed an appeal against Live! Casino and Hotel Philadelphia, challenging the ownership.
But on Thursday, Governor Tom Wolf repealed the 2004 ownership restriction, thereby making SugarHouse’s appeal moot. SugarHouse then dropped its appeal.
With the repeal, investor David S. Cordish, chairman and CEO of Cordish Cos. of Baltimore, told the Inquirer that construction on the $600 million casino and hotel will begin in 2018. If all goes to plan, Live! Casino and Hotel Philadelphia should open its doors in 2020.
The casino calls for 2,000 slot machines and 125 game tables, while the hotel will have 200-plus rooms. There will also be a 2,600-square-foot parking garage attached to the project. It’s touting itself as, “the first comprehensive gaming, resort, entertainment and sports destination in the United States.”