Developers of Would-Be Vegas Casino Surrender to the Credit Market

Plans for a $4 billion Crown casino and hotel in Las Vegas have hit a big snag and development group LVT1 L.L.C.–which includes Crown Ltd., IDM Properties and York Capital Management–has decided to walk away from the project.As per news from the Wall Street Journal, the developers have put the property up for sale, having found themselves unable to meet lenders’ growing equity demands. Located on a 27-acre parcel near the intersection of Las Vegas Blvd. and Sahara Ave., the Crown development is designed to feature 300 guestrooms and 4,700 condominium residences in a 142-story skyscraper, as per a December 2007 Clark County document. Additional plans call for nearly 650,000 square feet of retail, gaming and other public space, as well as 439,000 square feet of convention space.It was in 2006 when LTV1, at the time consisting of Austin-based IDM and New York City-headquartered York, optioned to purchase the land from Archon Corp. for $450 million. Last June, Packer’s Publishing and Broadcasting–which split into two entities in late 2007 with part of the company becoming Victoria, Australia’s Crown Ltd.–bought into the joint venture with a $22.5 million contribution in exchange for a 37.5 percent interest in the project. Despite having put the project on the market, LVT1 has not given up all hope of remaining involved in the project. The team is reportedly hoping to secure an equity partner.