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Indiana casino expansion cancelled

Pinnacle Entertainment has announced that it will indefinitely postpone the planned expansion of the Belterra Casino in Indiana.

Indiana casino expansion cancelledThe decision comes after the state's legislators approved a bill which would allow up to 2,000 slot machines to be added to the two Indiana horse racing tracks. Money from the riverboat expansion project will be shifted to other venues, announced Pinnacle. The slot machines at the horse tracks will attract enough customers to make the expansion project unprofitable, thus the company had to pull the plug.

The expansion of the hotel, which has 608 rooms, was announced in January 2006, and would have made Belterra the largest hotel in the state of Indiana. Almost 20% of the customers at Belterra Casino come from Indianapolis and the casino management believes that most of them will start going to the race tracks once the slot machines are operational.

The gambling expansion at the Indiana race tracks was passed after long debates, and would provide much needed property tax relief, according to the supporters of the bill.

Pinnacle Entertainment (NYSE:PNK) is a Las-Vegas based company, owns and operates casinos in US and other countries. Yesterday, the closed Sands Casino in Atlantic City, also owned by Pinnacle Ent., burned over $60 million in old chips from the non-operational casino. Pinnacle plans to level the Sands in the fall and build a bigger casino. Most likely, the funds set aside for the Indiana casino expansion will now be funnelled to the new Atlantic City casino.



Related news:

 Gambling expansion of Indiana race tracks in the hands of Governor
 Riverboat casinos may "lose the boats" in Indiana



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