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Gateway Casino has big plans for North Bay

Plans are for a 20 to $24 million facility covering a seven acre parcel of land on Pinewood Park Drive
20181127 gateway casino location turl
The proposed site of Gateway's North Bay Casino. Jeff Turl/BayToday.

It's been quiet, but things are moving along in the background as Gateway Casinos continues to plan for its North Bay location on Pinewood Park Drive.

A source close to City Hall tells BayToday that Gateway has already submitted extensive plans to the city for a 20 to $24 million facility covering a seven-acre parcel of land bordered by Pinewood Park Drive, Highway 11 and the PetroCanada station.

"We don't have a signed purchase agreement or sale as yet for any property in North Bay so I can't make any announcement or confirm any details at this time, " Gateway spokesman Rob Mitchell told BayToday.

He says he's not aware that Gateway has prepared an application for a building permit.

"I wouldn't be surprised. That would be pro forma because we are going to build something but I'm not aware of a building permit application gone forward at this point in time."

Mitchell says he has no confirmation as yet for when a construction date will be.

"I know negotiations continue for the site in North Bay but I can't confirm anything. I understand it's still with the legal team."

In September, Gateway announced it has abandoned efforts to buy land across from the North Bay Regional Hospital.

See: Casino rolls Snake Eyes with Highway 17 location

The Pinewood location is expected to be more than just a few tables and slot machines.

See: New casino expected to be a regional draw with food and entertainment

"We do believe in creating an entertainment experience whether you're a gambler or not and we try to create a number of compelling reasons for folks to come in and have a great meal or enjoy some entertainment," Carrie Kormos, Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications told BayToday in 2016.

Kormos said Gateway had already done some research and looked at market capacity with competing facilities in Sudbury and Orillia, but will be doing more with local stakeholders to "really understand the market and scope out what we think would be the best fit in terms of the size and scale of the amenities for the community of North Bay".

BayToday has also learned that the property immediately to the south of the casino land has been bought by a Toronto developer, however, details on that project were not immediately available.