On Thursday, the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians, formerly known as the Gun Lake Tribe, announced expansion plans for its 5-year-old Gun Lake Casino in Wayland, Michigan.

While preliminary work is already underway, this spring construction will begin as the tribe adds a 300-seat multi-station buffet, additional gaming floor square footage, as well as the expansion of Stage 131 lounge and entertainment area. The current team member dining room will be replaced with a new employee dining room and lounge, and will provide additional locker space, a break room and an employee café. The project is expected to be completed in the summer of 2017, according to a Gun Lake Tribal Gaming Authority Board press release. In advance of spring construction, site preparation has been started by Clark construction, casino officials said. During the duration of the casino expansion project the northwest parking lot will be closed off.

Located between Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo off Exit 61 on U.S. 131, the first phase of the casino was built in 2009 on part of the approximate 147 acres in Allegan County that the federal government placed in trust for the tribe. During construction it generated 750 jobs. Currently, more than 1,600 slot machines, a food court, 33 table games, a 225-seat café are operated by the casino, along with lounges, bars, and live entertainment.

Amid a legal challenge that extended all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, the casino opened in February 2011. To confirm the tribe’s reservation trust status and to protect the facility from the effects of the Salazar v. Patchak and Carcieri v. Salazar decisions S.1603 (pdf) was passed by Congress, the Gun Lake Trust Land Reaffirmation Act, according to Indianz.com.

The Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indian owned casino is operated by the Tribe’s management partner, MPM Enterprises, LLC. The latter is owned by private investors from Michigan and an affiliate of Station Casinos, Inc.

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