It seems plans for the expansion of Red Deer Resort and Casino will not go forward. Last week, the Municipal Planning Commission voted against the development of an additional 2,000-person capacity to the property’s event centre and build a parkade across the street. Members of the commission voted 4-2 against the project and cited insufficient onsite parking as reasoning.
A while back, the owner of the hotel property, O’Chiese Hospitality Inc. announced its plans to relocate Jackpot Casino from downtown to the site of the former Cambridge Hotel and Convention Centre site at the corner of 50th Avenue and 32nd Street. Meanwhile, the existing hotel convention centre on the southwest side will be transformed into a casino property and has gained approval.
Plans are Rejected After Vote
However, the owner’s other plans were just recently revealed to the public. The idea is to develop a new 3,028-square-metre event centre that would add 2,000 people capacity on the site on the northeast side of the land. A spokesperson for the company elaborated that the owners have previously stated that the plan was to use the space for additional parking space.
But in the plan presented to the MPC, the project would demolish the current nightclubs at the property and replace them with a modernized, large event centre. The new amenity would stretch over double the land of the clubs. In its application, the company requested MPC to approve a decrease to 551 parking stalls onsite from the minimum requirement of 577.
In order to compensate for the decrease in parking stalls, the plan would have built a future off-site parkade across 32nd Street. But the majority of commission members felt the lack of sufficient onsite parking could unduly impact the use or enjoyment of neighbouring properties and create impacts on traffic flow. They voted 4-2 not to proceed with the project.
MPC members also doubted that the proposed number of parking spaces would be enough to accommodate all of the vehicles of clients for the casino and event centre. Mayor Ken Johnston and Coun. Kraymer Barnstable voted in favour of the event centre development. But Coun. Lawrence Lee and citizen representatives Linda Cullen-Saik, Jack Engel and Tony McDonnell voted against it.
More from the Local Industry
Recently, the Alberta Gaming Liquor and Cannabis Commission announced that it has increased the maximum capacity for VLT machines in the province from 6,000 to 6,098. This move comes in aid to debt-stricken airport authorities which would be able to use gaming revenue as a way of recovering from the unprecedented situation of 2020 and the related closures.
Meanwhile, in January 2023, an experiential real estate investment trust, VICI Properties, reported that it has agreed on a deal to purchase four casino properties in Alberta, Canada, from Pure Gaming Canadian Corporation. The four casino properties in question are Pure Casino Edmonton, Pure Casino Yellowhead, Pure Casino Calgary, and Pure Casino Lethbridge.
Source: Michelin, Lana “Proposal for expanded Red Deer Resort and Casino development is nixed by Red Deer’s planning commission” Red Deer Advocate, March 23, 2023