Pennsylvania Gaming Property Debuts $208M Expansion

The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority has completed its new 300,000-square-foot gaming and entertainment complex at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in Wiles-Barre, Pa. The authority shelled out $208 million to realize the project. With construction activity complete, Mohegan Sun has an additional 55,000 square feet of gaming space, 7,000 square feet of retail space, entertainment venues, a bevy of new restaurants, an expanded food court and auxiliary parking accommodations. Both the retail and dining elements feature national chain destinations that are highly coveted in the area, including Brookstone and Ruth’s Chris Steak House. “We’re marketing ourselves not only to gamers, but to tourists and residents who are looking for great food and great entertainment,” a Mohegan Sun spokesperson told CPN today. Development of the complex, which is located on a parcel adjacent to the original casino, marks the second phase of an expansion endeavor that kicked off in 2005 with the commencement of construction of a 90,000-square-foot gaming space and food court. “Even then we knew it would be a two-phase process; it was always part of our long-term plan,” the spokesperson said. “The demand was always there.” The first phase reached completion in late 2006 at a cost of approximately $73 million. Mohegan Sun, the first casino in Pennsylvania and now one of seven in the Commonwealth, has come a long way, having originally opened its doors as a harness racetrack in 1965; harness racing at the property is still alive and well today. Further expansion of Mohegan Sun in the future is a possibility, but no additional plans are currently on the table. “We have over 400 acres,” the spokesperson added, “but other projects will be determined by how well we perform with this project.” Mohegan Sun is owned and operated by the Uncasville, Conn.-based Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, which is an instrumentality of the Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut.