Dream Gets Approval to be Las Vegas’ Newest $500 Million Casino Despite Airport Fears

McCarran Airport, Las Vegas
Image: Alan Wilson, flickr

For those visiting Las Vegas for the first time, the proximity between the famous strip and the city’s McCarran International Airport never ceases to amaze.

And that synergy will continue after Sin City’s latest casino development has been given the green light – with just a chain-link fence separating the venue from the airfield.

The Clark County Commission, who act as the planning authority in the Neon City, have granted approval to the Dream Las Vegas hotel and casino resort, which will be built on five acres of land adjacent to the airport. The ground us set to be broken next year, with the hope of opening in 2024.

The casino will take pride of place in the area, given that it will be the first seen next to the famous Welcome to Las Vegas sign for those travelling from the west of the country. Located on Las Vegas Blvd, the Dream Hotel and Casino will be just a stone’s throw from the Mandalay Bay Resort.

Costing an estimated $500 million to build, the Dream will feature 527 hotel rooms, 450 suites, seven restaurants and bars, a rooftop pool and a spa.

After Clark County officials signed off on the project, the Dream Hotel Group’s Jay Stein said:

“Today’s announcement is a testament to the strength of our brands, setting the tone for what is sure to be another record year of strategic growth momentum for Dream Hotel Group.

“It is our goal to create an experience-driven property that surpasses expectations, blending forward-thinking design, progressive programming and world-class hospitality with unmatched dining and nightlife.”

Flight Risk

Runway at Night

The Clark County Commission voted 6-1 in favour of the casino, despite the fact that there’s a catalogue of risks involved.

A number of major airlines, including Delta, United and American Airlines, have spoken of their concerns about the hotel’s proximity to the McCarran runway – the lights and lasers that casinos use could cause ‘blindness’ in the cockpit.

And the Transportation Security Administration have spoken of their concern about the property’s closeness to an airport that often plays host to military aircraft, special operations and ‘high level’ individuals.

There are fears that the proximity between the casino and the airport could pose significant security risks, with the use of drones, bombs and even potential shooting attacks amongst the concerns of opponents.

To their end, the Dream Hotel Group have altered their designs to try and strip away some of the risk, and so that’s why balconies will not be built on any of the suites given the vantage point they would provide.

A nine-foot tall security wall will also be constructed around the perimeter, while a security checkpoint – which will only allow pre-authorised vehicles to enter the premises – will also be introduced.

A number of decorative features, including a mammoth tower, will be switched sides so that it sits on the city side of the casino resort, and therefore is not a distraction to a pilot’s ‘sightline’ while landing and taking off.