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Cavs Owner Dan Gilbert: I'm Still Interested In Phase II Of Cleveland Casino

Part Of Project Could Include Residential Living Spaces, According To Report

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Billionaire NBA owner Dan Gilbert reportedly still wants to expand his gambling footprint in the city of Cleveland.

According to newsnet5.com, Gilbert said this week that his company, Rock Gaming, is “committed to build Phase II” of the Horseshoe Casino Cleveland. That casino opened in 2012.

Gilbert also has a gambling business in the city of Detroit, in addition to Quicken Loans.

Gilbert, like others in the gaming industry, has to worry about over-saturating a market. The poster child for that worry is Atlantic City, which will have five fewer casinos by year’s end thanks to gambling expansion in neighboring markets.

“Regional gaming across the United States has serious challenges not just in Cleveland or Cincinnati, but across the United States,” Gilbert said.

The good news for Clevelanders is that Gilbert is likely not going to let his original investment go to waste. “We paid $85 million for the land so we’re not going to watch weeds grow on it," he said of the space across from the Cavaliers arena.

Part of the plan to develop the available space could include residential, according to the report.

“We’re trying to analyze and figure out what’s the best way we go about Phase II,” Gilbert said. “What other development do we include in Phase II from residential to retail, Phase II of the casino itself, hotel, those kinds of things.”

With LeBron James coming back to Cleveland and the value of the franchise increasing by as much as $500 million, Gilbert may be more inclined to spend quickly on Phase II.

Ohio currently has four Las Vegas-style casinos and a handful of racinos.

The consensus is that the four casinos haven’t been as successful as predicted.