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Native American tribe begins work on $100M casino expansion

WAYLAND, Mich. (AP) — A Native American tribe is planning a $100 million expansion of its western Michigan casino that will include new dining, entertainment and gaming space. The Gun Lake Tribe said preliminary site work has started at the casino in Wayland, MLive.com reported Thursday.

"We are proud of the effort of our team members that has driven the continued success of Gun Lake Casino and our Tribe's contributions to Michigan's economy in the last eight years," Tribal Chairman Bob Peters said in a statement. "These expansion plans allow us to build on these efforts and provide even more employment opportunities and increased economic impact in our local communities."

About 76,000 square feet (7,060 square meters) of space will be added to the casino, which has been open since 2011. The expansion will accommodate more than 2,000 slot machines, 47 games tables, a high-limit room, a 300-seat buffet, a 225-seat café. The new space is expected to open in summer 2021.

The casino already employs 1,100 people and officials said the expansion will lead to an additional 125 hires. The announcement comes after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that it properly ended a lawsuit over the tribe's casino. In 2008, a Michigan resident sued the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians after the tribe received the go-ahead to build a casino on land near the man's property.

Information from: The Grand Rapids Press:MLive.com, http://www.mlive.com

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