Lane casino closer to reality

Published 12:01 am Thursday, November 29, 2007

NATCHEZ — The Lane Company is getting closer to building their riverfront casino, Lane spokesman Ted Doody said Wednesday.

The company signed an option agreement with the city in July, committing to building a casino and riverfront development under Roth Hill.

“We are going to be going through the city planning approval process and the planning commission review over the next month,” Doody said Wednesday.

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The casino will be built on land rather than a riverboat, he said.

“It will be built on the edge of the Roth Hill site, overlooking the river,” he said. “We have been working very closely with the Natchez Historic Foundation on design works.”

The casino will be a two-story building, approximately 40,000 square feet.

Doody said he could not release information about what the casino would look like or what their required non-gambling investment would be.

“A lot has to do with proprietary information,” he said. “This is not to keep anyone in the dark. We’re still trying to finalize designs for approval. As soon as we’ve gotten some final approvals from leaders in cities, we’ll release the plans and let everybody know what’s going on.”

Mayor Phillip West said he was not at liberty to divulge details.

“I do know they are moving forward,” West said.

West said he expected the company to enter into a lease agreement in a matter of months.

“They’re moving full speed ahead,” he said. “They expect to be successful in getting necessary approvals and permits (from state and federal agencies).”

The option agreement gives Lane six months to sign with the city and enter into a lease agreement.