January 02, 2019

Gilbane to lead $700M Philadelphia hotel-casino construction

Dive Brief:

Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia, an affiliate of The Cordish Cos., has selected Gilbane Building Co. as general contractor for its $700 million development in Philadelphia's stadium district. “Gilbane was a natural fit for this project because the team is so experienced in the hospitality industry, and they bring a real understanding of our vision,” Joe Weinberg, managing partner of The Cordish Cos., said in a statement.

Gilbane will build the 1.5-million-square-foot sports, entertainment and casino resort, which will feature a boutique hotel with more than 200 rooms, dining and live entertainment venues and a 2,700-space parking garage. Gilbane will first demolish an existing Holiday Inn and other buildings occupying the site of the future Live! development.

Project officials said the complex will create approximately 3,000 direct and indirect construction jobs, and that Cordish has committed to a community benefits plan that will include small business and labor hiring goals for local residents, minorities, women and veterans. There is a planned pre-bid information session at Cordish's Xfinity Live! venue in Philadelphia on Jan. 11 from 10 a.m. to noon for subcontractors and vendors interested in participating in the project.

Dive Insight:

Project schedule documents — with Gilbane’s logo on them — presented at the Pennsylvania Gaming Commission’s November meeting gave an early hint as to the company’s involvement in the development. The presentation was part of Cordish subsidiary Stadium Development’s successful request for an extra two years to begin slot machine operations at the Live! casino and hotel venue after project delays. At the meeting, project officials indicated that demolition would start soon and that substantial completion would be reached in December 2020.

When the Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia opens for business, it will benefit from the nearby presence of not just one but several professional and college sports teams that play at the Wells Fargo Center, Lincoln Financial Field and Citizens Bank Park — all of which are located at the Philadelphia Sports Complex site. In fact, Cordial already has a successful retail and entertainment development in the Wells Fargo Center — the 4.4-acre Xfinity Live! complex.

Another Cordish Live! development is the $250 million Texas Live! project in Arlington, Texas, which is located between the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium and the future home of the Texas Rangers as well as near the Rangers’ current ballpark, Globe Life Field. The new baseball stadium, Texas Live!, a hotel and a convention center represent a total investment of $1.2 billion.

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