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Gila River tribe breaks ground on 4th casino in Phoenix area

CHANDLER, Ariz. (AP) — The Gila River Indian Community’s gambling operation has begun construction of its fourth casino in metro Phoenix.

Gila River Hotels & Casinos on Monday held a groundbreaking ceremony for the planned Santan Mountain casino, which will be located in the Chandler area near Gilbert Road and Hunt Highway.

The 160-acre (65-hectare), $150 million project will feature more than 850 slots and table games, a BetMGM Sportsbook and multiple dining options for guests, and new games will include mini baccarat, craps and roulette.

Two of the tribe’s current casinos also are located in the Chandler area. The other is on the metro area’s southwestern rim.

The tribe announced the new casino project last summer after signing a revised gambling compact with the state.

Gambling expansion legislation approved by state lawmakers at Gov. Doug Ducey’s behest included provisions allowing tribes to increase their gambling offerings, both in number of casinos and types of gambling games.

Arizona currently has 24 tribal casinos statewide, including seven in metro Phoenix.

The legislation will allow up to 11 statewide, include four in metro Phoenix and one in the Tucson area.