Cherokee Nation Businesses and Legends, has announced details of its proposal to build a ‘first-of-its-kind’ resort destination in Pope County which will be branded Legends Resort & Casino Arkansas. The $225m facility will feature circa 50,000 square feet of gaming space accommodating a sportsbook, 1,200 slot machines and 32 table games.

A unique project designed by international firm HKS Architects, Legends Resort & Casino Arkansas showcases architecture influenced by the distinctive natural landscape of the Arkansas River Valley. The development is planned for Russellville, Arkansas, on approximately 130 acres north of Interstate 40 along Nob Hill Road, between Weir Road and Alaskan Trail.

Shawn Slaton, CEO of Cherokee Nation Businesses, explained: “Since submitting our initial application to the Arkansas State Racing Commission in May, we have remained fully committed to the people of Pope County and to taking our proposed development to the next level. We’ve embraced the community’s feedback and are confident this resort destination brings something for everyone.”

The total statewide economic impact of the proposed development is projected to exceed $5bn in the first 10 years. The project is expected to generate more than 1,000 direct jobs, and the estimated timeline for completion is 18 months.

“From the onset, our goal in partnering with CNB has been to create a resort that truly offers something for everyone and provides an unmatched guest experience,” said Bill Rhoda, President of Legends Global Planning. “Most importantly, Legends Resort & Casino Arkansas will create a positive economic impact of benefit to Pope County and the state of Arkansas.”