Playing cards. (Photo courtesy

Chatham To Be New Home Of Large Casino

After months of rumours and speculation, Gateway Casinos says it plans to build a new “Cascades Casino” on vacant land at the northeast corner of Richmond St. and Keil Dr.

Rob Mitchell, the director of communications for Gateway Casinos Ontario, says once they get necessary government approvals and complete land acquisition, the proposed new casino will feature an exciting mix of amenities including slots and table games.

Mitchell says in the coming weeks, Gateway will announce more details on the size and scope of the development, including new employment opportunities, food and beverage offerings and the investment in the local economy for the new build.

“It’s going to be, I think, a terrific contribution to the local economy and we’re very happy about the jobs that we’ll be creating and the revenue that we’ll be returning to the community. It’s good news all around I think,” says Mitchell.

The casino in Dresden will continue to operate with business as usual for the next two years while the construction of the new casino is underway in Chatham, and then Dresden staff will be transferred.

The proposed new casino is expected to begin construction this spring and Gateway hopes to have it open to the public before 2020.

During the 2016/17 operating year, Chatham-Kent received $700,000 in hosting fees from Ontario Lottery and Gaming, a number Chatham-Kent Mayor Randy Hope says he expects to see an increase with a new, larger operation in Chatham.

Mitchell says all casino amenities, including parking, will fit on the vacant lot.

“You can come with your family and visit our restaurants and not even pass through the gaming floor. All of our amenities and entertainment features are at the front of the house and that’s what makes us distinctive in the gaming world,” he says.

Mitchell says Cascades will look like the new Gateway casino near Sarnia that will be opening in May.

“Within the next few weeks, probably by the end of May, you’ll get an idea of what Cascades will look like if you take a trip to Point Edward and visit our Starlight facility there. You’ll get an idea of some of the amenities that we’re going to bring to Chatham,” Mitchell says.