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Council approves plans for casino, 98-foot sign at north end of Strip

A huge sign and a new casino should be in place at the corner of Las Vegas Boulevard and Sahara Avenue by the end of next year, an attorney for the developer told the Las Vegas City Council on Wednesday.

The council approved the plan for a 98-foot, 11,200-square-foot electronic sign at the high-profile intersection, which is where the city of Las Vegas meets the Strip.

Mayor Oscar Goodman and Mayor Pro Tem Gary Reese told the developer, Steve Johnson of Arizona, to do something special on the corner, and they reiterated that point Wednesday.

“It’s critical to me that that casino be first-class,” Mayor Oscar Goodman said. “This is not just a big sign. I want this to compete with any casino in town.”

If it comes up short, he added, “I will do whatever it takes to yank the liquor license … that was said with love and affection, by the way.”

Plans call for a 37,100-square-foot building with a 9,000-square-foot casino, a 6,000-square-foot restaurant and 4,000 square feet of retail space, including a Walgreens.

No hotel rooms are planned for the property. That worried Reese, who wondered if the casino could survive without guests staying there overnight.

“I know we’re challenged there, and I hope it will be a success,” he said.

The site is the former home of the Holy Cow! brewery, which closed in 2002.

In 2004, the City Council approved plans for a 73-story building with 960 condominiums on the site, but the land was back on the market in 2005. Johnson bought it in 2007.

Contact reporter Alan Choate at achoate@reviewjournal.com or 702-229-6435.

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