Spectacle Entertainment and Hard Rock International have made public their plans for the new Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana at an official groundbreaking ceremony held at the construction site, located at 5400 West 29th Avenue in Gary last week. Present were state and local officials, alongside executives from the two firms.

The 200,000-square-foot entertainment complex is a joint venture that will include a sportsbook, a retail shop, a 2,000-seat showroom and more than 2,130 gaming positions. Phase two of the project will see the addition of a 200-plus-room hotel and a multi-level parking garage.

Executive Director of the Indiana Gaming Commission, Sara Tait; Spectacle Entertainment Chairman and CEO Rod Ratcliff; and Chairman of the Seminole Tribe of Florida Marcellus Osceola planted shovels to commemorate the start of construction on Indiana’s first Hard Rock property. Various other officials, including Gary Mayor Jerome Prince and Hard Rock International COO Jon Lucas joined the trio on stage.

Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana is forecasting more than $20m annually in tax revenue and payments to the City of Gary and surrounding communities. Approximately 1,000 construction jobs, with an emphasis to hire union labor, and an estimated additional 500 jobs are expected. 

Spectacle Entertainment has also committed to local investment with a pledge to work with minority and women owned businesses. Currently all 17 senior leaders at the firm’s Majestic Star Casino are board directors for local charitable and community organizations in Gary and the Northern Indiana region. 

The team has sponsored, participated and volunteered for multiple local events and programs throughout the year, with a plan to directly drive more than $500,000 in fundraising in 2020.

Ratcliff stated: “Breaking ground for Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana is the start of an incredible partnership between Spectacle Entertainment, Hard Rock International and the City of Gary, Indiana. It is an honor to be here today and to see this dream become a reality. A lot of work has gone into this project, a lot of planning. I’m grateful to all those who played a part in it. There is no doubt this is a game changer for Gary, Indiana and the entire Northern Indiana region.”

“It’s an honor to partner with Spectacle Entertainment on this project, bringing the Hard Rock brand of world-class entertainment to Northern Indiana,” said Lucas. “This property will be the premier casino destination in the region.”