Finishing Touches In Casino Area Make Way For Horseshoe Grand Opening
Ceremony Celebrates Collaboration, Roadway Work & Streetscape Improvements
Excitement is building as the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Grand Opening on March 4, 2013, approaches. City and Casino officials, Pendleton residents, and area business owners celebrated the infrastructure improvements made in the Casino area and in the Pendleton neighborhood by making final touches to a newly created plaza on Short Reading Road this morning.
The partnership between the City, Horseshoe, Pendleton and the Casino Neighborhoods Working Group will result in more than $22.9 million of budgeted improvements in the area surrounding the casino and in the Pendleton neighborhood. The funds were made possible through a Tax Increment Financing package, which allowed the City to issue bonds based on a guaranteed valuation of the casino’s future property taxes. The work has been completed with a commitment to small, minority, and women-owned businesses. To date, the project has awarded 49.11% ,or almost $4.5 million, to small contractors, including over 20% to both minority and female contractors with an investment totaling $3.8 million.
"This is a great example of partnership. We looked at the construction of the Casino as a strategic opportunity to improve the surrounding area," Mayor Mark Mallory said. "And it has made a dramatic difference in the community. By partnering with the Casino, we were able to make smart investments and produce big results for this neighborhood."
Casino Neighborhood Infrastructure Project
The Casino Area Public Infrastructure scope of work developed and constructed by casino developer Rock Ohio Caesars (ROC), was budgeted at $16.8 million and consists of work around the 23-acre casino site, including widening and straightening roads; installing new traffic signals; replacing sidewalks and curbs; relocating utilities underground; and the installation of trees, street lights and other furnishings. The work also created four landscaped plazas in the area.
"The City of Cincinnati has been supportive of the casino development since Day 1," said Steve Rosenthal, a ROC principal. "We specifically designed the casino to complement this area, and these improvements will further enhance the connectivity and aesthetics between the casino and the surrounding neighborhoods."
The Casino Neighborhood Infrastructure Project managed through the City’s Department of Transportation and Engineering is budgeted at $6.1 million for neighborhood improvement in the Pendleton neighborhood, the Central Business District, and the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. Some of the most visible enhancements include: streetscape improvements, new street trees, new street lights, converting streets to two-way traffic from one-way traffic and vice versa, new pedestrian lighting, new way-finding signage, installing public art along some streets, and spot infrastructure repairs on curbs and ramps.
"We are extremely pleased with the work, which successfully promotes walkable streets through improved wayfinding, new sidewalks, landscaping, improved lighting, and more," said Cincinnati City Manager Milton Dohoney, Jr. "This work will certainly help to establish this area as a new regional destination in the heart of downtown Cincinnati."
About the City of Cincinnati
Recognized as a TOP 100 Place to Live in America, Cincinnati is an attractive, culturally and ethnically diverse community that provides an excellent working and living environment for its residents and their families. The City of Cincinnati is committed to creating a strong quality of life for its citizens by providing basic services. With a strong focus on economic development, job creation, housing, and public safety, the City continually seeks to enhance the well being of Cincinnatians and visitors alike. The City strives for efficient and effective management in governance in order to best serve its citizens.
About Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati
Rock Gaming LLC and Caesars Entertainment Corporation are developing a $400 million full-service casino in downtown Cincinnati which is scheduled to open March 4, 2013.* The development will include three outward facing restaurants to engage pedestrians and support existing businesses, cultural, nightlife and sports attractions downtown. Horseshoe Cincinnati is expected to attract an estimated six million visits to downtown annually. The casino will employ nearly 1,700 team members and will feature 2,000 slot machines, 85 table games, and a World Series of Poker room, along with a feature bar, a quick-casual eatery and a buffet restaurant. The development has also created more than 2,000 construction jobs. For more information please visit www.HorseshoeCincinnati.com.