Although the dollar values and few other details were off, most of the preliminary information about a Rivers Casino expansion was shown to be on the money in a January 20 report on the World Casino News.

On Tuesday, casino representatives appeared in front of the Pittsburgh Planning Commission to share their ideas about fulfilling their promise of becoming a true destination casino. At a price tag of $51 million the seven-story, four-star hotel would include 221 guest rooms and connect to the casino on its east end, utilizing the currently vacant land between the casino and the Carnegie Science Center. Earlier reports indicate that the Science Center has signed off on Rivers Casino’s plans to add lodging to their current offering.

No additional parking spaces will be needed as Rivers over-built the existing parking garage for just such a potential future expansion. The hotel development would be privately funded and operated under the Rivers Casino brand as Rivers Casino Hotel.

Traffic studies have shown that the development would not negatively impact nearby intersections and according to a press release from the company, the hotel plan meets current zoning requirements.

A spa will be added to existing casino space for use by hotel and casino guests and the hotel will include a fitness center, new restaurant, and a lobby bar.

Representatives claim that 1,528 new jobs will be created with 1,400 of them temporary construction positions along with 128 permanent positions in the hotel and casino.

Rivers Casino has generated over $1 billion in tax revenue since the facility opened in 2009. Rivers Casino Hotel is expected to increase state and local tax benefits by 6 percent, adding an estimated $10.5 million in new tax revenue annually on a permanent basis.

“The possibility of a hotel was first included in the casino’s 2006 Master Development Plan, and we’re excited to begin this next stage in our evolution,” said Craig Clark, general manager of Rivers Casino. “The new Rivers Casino Hotel fulfills the promise of a true destination casino.”

A builder is yet to be selected. Rivers Casino Hotel was designed by Stantec, with planning and landscape design by the Pittsburgh office of Strada, L.L.C., and Development Management Associates serving as owner’s representative.

The hotel hopes to break ground in the late spring with an eye on opening in 2018, pending city approval.

Rivers Casino features more than 2,900 slots, 92 table games, a 30-table poker room, nine distinctive restaurants and bars, a riverside amphitheater, a multi-purpose event space, live music performances, and free parking. Since opening the casino has paid out more than $631 million in jackpots, according to information from the company.

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