Those who keep an eye on the Las Vegas economy are beginning to wonder if the massive Resorts World project will ever get off the ground.
A Malaysian company purchased the stalled Echelon project on 87 acres at Las Vegas Boulevard and Convention Center in March of 2013.
It promised construction would begin in 2014, but since then, progress has been slow to non-existent.
The company does have a pattern of moving slowly and sometimes mysteriously on some of its major developments.
When Genting purchased the former Echelon site from Boyd gaming, it was quick to trumpet plans for a $4 billion Asian themed resort casino.
It rolled out colorful artist renderings that included a giant panda exhibit, water park, and more than 6,500 rooms.
Construction was slated to begin in late 2014, but it didn’t happen. A few months later, the executive in charge of the project left the company.
After a May 2015 ground breaking ceremony where dignitaries spoke glowingly of the project, the site, and the company has remained strangely quiet.
These days, if you drive past the property occasionally you may see a crew or two working on the parking garage, but that’s it.
At this pace, delivering on the 2018 opening date is a long shot.
8 News NOW has repeatedly reached out for information, but emails to company contacts are getting kicked back.
The only update on the $4 billion project is an occasional Facebook post. The last one was on October 26, 2015.
The project was projected to generate more than 30,000 construction jobs, 8,000 permanent jobs and $155 million in annual tax revenue.
The city of Miami was hoping for a similar economic shot in the arm in 2011, when Genting announced plans to build Resorts World Miami. The company purchased 14 acres of prime real estate on Biscayne Bay, and rolled out spectacular artist renderings of a casino resort the CEO said would “change the face of Miami.”
The promise of thousands of new jobs was intoxicating.
But five years later, there’s been no development, and the site remains idle.
After failing to get casino gambling legalized, Genting is quietly sitting on the property. There is speculation they may flip it. The company parted ways with legal and public relation representative. Reporters attempting to get updates are met with radio silence.
Maybe the most encouraging sign with Resorts World Las Vegas is that the company continues filing for the necessary permits to move forward.
The county has given the go-ahead, but exactly when they intend to go full throttle on construction is anyone’s guess. One thing is for sure, thousands of Las Vegans who need jobs will be watching.
Meanwhile, south of Resorts World is the Alon site.
There are plans there to build a1,100 room hotel/casino next to the Trump.
Developers initially said they’d begin construction in late 2015, but missed the date. They’re also declining interviews, although a spokesman told 8 News NOW, they’re hoping to break ground sometime in late spring or early summer.