The Catawba Indian Nation of South Carolina has endured a long and arduous journey to opening a casino. Since casino gambling remains illegal in their home state, this journey led to land in Kings Mountain in North Carolina. Court battles with a neighboring tribe was one of the biggest hurdles to clear. However, this long journey is nearing its end.
Part of the process in building a brand new casino resort were plans to build a pre-launch facility. This was a smaller gaming venue that could operate while the entire project was completed.
The Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort announced the plans to open the pre-launch gaming venue this summer.
The pre-launch facility will be constructed as a prefabricated modular structure. It will offer limited gaming capabilities along with limited food and beverage service. There will also be a few added amenities.
This announcement comes on the heels of an agreement between the Catawba Indian Nation and North Carolina authorities. The Bureau of Indian Affairs signed off on the compact to clear the path. The main piece of the compact was a revenue agreement between the two parties.
Catawba Tribe Chief Bill Harris released the following statement:
“With the completion of our compact with the State of North Carolina, the Catawba Nation is eager to open the casino as quickly as possible to begin bringing economic benefits and jobs to the state and region.
He went on to add:
“We’re working with Delaware North, our consultant on the Catawba Two Kings Casino Resort project. As well as our developer, Skyboat Gaming, to make that happen by opening what we are calling a ‘pre-launch’ facility this summer.”
Also part of the plan is an introductory phase of the full casino. This would offer an additional 1,300 slot machines. This would be a permanent structure that would eventually be part of the full casino resort. The timing on that phase of the project would take around a year to complete.
The entire Kings Mountain site covers a full 17 acres of land. The casino resort will be located on Dixon School Road. Kings Mountain is located in Cleveland Country. The location is roughly 35 miles west of Charlotte, NC. off of Interstate 85.
The total project will cost almost $275 million to complete. It is expected to create 2,600 permanent jobs when fully operational.
It will also generate thousands of construction jobs throughout this region. Ground for the Two Kings Casino Resort was first broke in July of last year. Following an opposing tribe’s lawsuit and other forms of opposition, the Catawba Nation persevered with their plans. The groundbreaking ceremony took place after the tribe gained federal approval for the land.
The primary opposition came from The Eastern Band of Cherokees. They currently own and operate two casino venues in the western part of North Carolina. They sued the Catawba tribe and the Interior Department to block these plans. The actual suit is still pending in federal court.
• Source: ‘Pre-launch’ casino facility with 500 slot machines to open in Kings Mountain, N.C. this summer from Wbtv.com On March 26, 2021.