Quapaws plan casino in northeast Oklahoma 5-14-07

QUAPAW, Okla. (AP) - An Oklahoma Indian tribe on Monday announced plans to build a hotel and casino in far northeast Oklahoma close to Kansas and Missouri.

The Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma plans to break ground in about a month on the first phase of the Downstream Casino Resort, a $200 million project that will include a 240-room hotel, a casino, restaurants, shops and a 10,000-square-foot meeting facility.

The resort is expected to employ about 1,200 people, said John Berrey, chairman of the Quapaw, Okla.-based tribe. The 70,000-square-foot casino will include 2,000 slot machines, 30 table games and 15 poker tables.

“This is something the Quapaws have wanted to do for a long time, because we knew the three-states property was ideal for an upscale resort, and it would be huge for the region's economy,” Berrey said in a statement.

Construction already has started on roads and other infrastructure in the area, and phase one of the project is scheduled to open in July 2008.

The second phase of the project calls for a conference center, spa and salon.