The Osage Nation announced the delay of the opening of its Bartlesville and Pawhuska casinos to 2023 due to supply chain problems with construction materials. Both projects broke ground in June 2021, and the tribe expected to open them this fall.
The new opening dates are now set for October 27, 2023, for the Bartlesville casino; and November 10, 2023, for the Pawhuska location.
Osage Casino in Tulsa, Oklahoma
Byron Bighorse, CEO of Osage Casinos said in a press release that the new properties “have been highly anticipated” as the demand for the tribe’s casinos continues to grow. However, he pointed out that supply chain issues have created a delay that the tribe “could not avoid.”
The projects will relocate and expand the tribe’s existing casinos in Pawhuska and outside Bartlesville in Osage County. Both new locations will feature hotels, pools, spas, fitness areas and meeting space, amenities that are not present in the existing locations.
The new Bartlesville facility will be on a 125-acre property at 1803 US Highway 60, less than two miles west of downtown. It will be 57,400 square feet and will have 500 slot machines, up from the current location’s 42,000 square feet and 440 slot machines. It will also have 100 hotel rooms and 11,800 square feet of meeting space.
Groundbreaking day for the delayed projects.
In April, the Bartlesville City Council agreed to provide utility service and improve utility infrastructure nearby the planned casino. While the city already serves the area of the facility with water utilities, the wastewater connection system will need upgrades to accommodate additional load from the casino. The city and the tribe agreed to split the cost of upgrades, with the Osage Nation paying $1 million and the city $870,000.
Under their agreement, the tribe will do the work of designing the upgrades to city and state specifications, and the city will have 10 years to complete work on the system. Also stipulated is an obligation for the tribe to pay the city 5% of revenue from hotel stays. This is expected to be between $9,000 and $12,000 monthly, depending on the time of year, among other factors.
The Pawhuska location will be on a 60-acre plot at 1421 John Dahl Ave., across State Highway 60 from the current location. It will have 250 electronic games, a 47-room hotel and 3,675 square feet of meeting space.