BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The Palace Casino is pumping more than $40 million into a new expansion project. The new 64,000 square foot addition would sit in front of the existing casino.
General Manager Keith Crosby said despite the struggling gaming market, the casino is confident in its investment.
"We have a lot of faith in this market. It'll rebound," Crosby said.
Crosby convinced Biloxi's Planning Commission to recommend a waterfront zoning change to build the addition. More than half would be for gaming. The new non-gaming amenities include a 300 seat buffet, a lounge and sports bar with a stage for live entertainment, a 24 hour cafe and grill, and a spa and fitness center.
But Crosby admits the expansion will come with its own set of challenges.
"No one's ever built out front of the existing structure. So we've got to continue to operate on what we have while we add all this on. It's going to be a strategic nightmare, but one everyone is ready to take on," Crosby said.
Despite the market's current condition, Crosby said there are advantages to acting now.
"Cost of commodities and materials and construction is down. So from that perspective, if you're going to do it, now's a good time to do it."
If all goes as planned, the project will take just under two years to complete.
The commission also approved a 21 foot variance so the addition could sit four feet from Howard Avenue. The Biloxi City Council must still approve the commission's recommendation for the project to move forward