File image of planned addition to Cascades Casino Hotel and Convention Centre

Cascades Casino expansion now set for next year

Langley City Council gives final approval to project

Work on a major expansion of the Cascades Casino Hotel and Convention Centre in Langley City is now expected to begin by the spring of 2018.

Langley City council gave final approval to the project at the Nov. 20 meeting following a Committee of the Whole hearing where there were no speakers for or against, nor were there any letters.

The vote was unanimous.

The project will add two more restaurants and more space for gaming and special events to the facility, located in the 20300 block of Fraser Highway.

The two-storey addition will be built on the south side of the casino where it faces Fraser Highway, in the location where taxis and motorcycles currently park.

Plans call for an upscale “Atlas” steak and seafood restaurant, with a smaller casual “Chow” dining spot along with an additional gaming area and washrooms on the ground floor. A roof patio and special occasion area will go upstairs. The expanded gaming space will make the casino playing floor about 10 per cent roomier.

The roof would include a raised garden so Atlas can grow its own herbs and some vegetables.

It’s estimated the 23,000 square foot expansion will create roughly 100 full- and part-time jobs.

When the project was given preliminary approval in October of 2016, the tentative start date for construction was expected to be spring of 2017.

Asked why the start of construction was moved, casino director of public relations Tanya Gabara told The Times “there are a number of steps in this process and we have been working to finalize the design and scope of the project for some time. We are now able to begin the final preparations so that construction on the new Atlas Steak + Fish Langley and changes to the gaming floor can begin.”

“We are thrilled that council has unanimously approved the renovation plans for Cascades Casino,” said casino director of PR Tanya Gabara.

The latest expansion comes after the 2014 renovations that created the current Match and buffet restaurants.

READ MORE: Changes coming to Cascades Casino

At the November meeting, council was informed the casino will be expanding the outdoor patio of Match.

The casino is a major employer that also directly contributes to the City by sharing 10 per cent of its net profits, as required under gaming regulations.

The City share, projected to be $6.4 million this year, was expected to keep taxes 2.5 per cent lower than they would have been without the gaming revenue.

The casino money was to be used on various projects including bridge deck repairs on 200 Street, Douglas Crescent rehabilitation between 204 Street and 208 Street, as well as work on 56 Avenue.

The casino revenues have allowed the City to become debt-free.

The casino opened its doors for the first time on May 5, 2005.

READ MORE: Casino was a good bet

It is operated by Burnaby-based Gateway Casino and Entertainment Limited, which also runs the Grand Villa Casino, Starlight Casino, Lake City Casinos in Vernon, Kamloops, Kelowna and Penticton, Chances gaming centres in Squamish, Surrey and Mission, as well as the Baccarat Casino and Palace Casino in Edmonton.

The Gateway website describes it as the “largest and most diversified gaming company in Canada”, operating in B.C., Alberta and Ontario, with over 6,100 employees in 26 gaming properties including 282 table games, over 9,500 slots, 68 restaurants and bars and 272 hotel rooms.



dan.ferguson@langleytimes.com

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