Council goes against staff on casino move

Plans for Cascades Casino in Aberdeen include a restaurant and outdoor amphitheatre.
Image Credit: Gateway Casinos

KAMLOOPS - The public will get to voice input on the proposed move of the downtown casino to the former Rona location in Aberdeen after a staff recommendation to deny the application was overturned by council Tuesday.

“We need the opportunity to hear from the community, and casino people,” Coun. Tina Lange said. “(We have) to listen to both sides.”

Staff said current policies and community plans did not provide a lot of support for the move of an entertainment facility out of the downtown core and recommended council deny the application.

Staff did say if council chose to go ahead with a public hearing the next moves had to be considered, which would include looking at the range of road and intersection upgrades that would need to be made.

“The intersection is failing already,” Coun. Ken Christian pointed out, noting he sees a casino as more of a regional asset that should be looked at on a larger scale.

The company hopes to begin construction later this year with an open date of fall 2015. The 50,000 square foot complex will include several restaurants and an outdoor amphitheatre in addition to the gaming floor. The company held several open houses in May for the public to take a look at the preliminary designs and hopes to host another one as early as next week as well. The hope is to be able to move to a public hearing in September

To contact a reporter for this story, email Jennifer Stahn at or call 250-819-3723. To contact an editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

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