Des Moines group wants to build casino at airport

Wednesday 15th January 2020

DES MOINES, Iowa -- A development group that wants to build a $225 million casino and hotel at the Des Moines airport said the project would help pay for a planned new terminal.

Highview Development Group presented the plan to the Des Moines Airport Authority board on Tuesday.

The complex would include a 350-room hotel connected to the airport by a skywalk. There also would be a fountain, rock garden, restaurant and wedding and banquet facilities.

The airport board tabled discussion of the proposal until its February meeting.

Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino in Altoona has been the lone legal gambling house in metropolitan Des Moines since it opened as a horse track in 1989. It added slot machines in 1995 and table gambling in 2004.

The new, 18-gate terminal is planned for an opening in 2028. Officials have been seeking $194 million from various sources to cover the $500 million project.

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