Gateway Casinos and Entertainment Ltd. is investing $36 million into a new casino in Chatham.

The company says the new 50,000 square foot building, at 615 Richmond St. at the northeast corner of Richmond and Keil Drive, will also create up to 200 new jobs in the area.

“The proposed $36-million investment in Chatham-Kent would bring not only up to 200 jobs to the area when we open, but millions in economic spin-offs throughout construction,” says Gateway CEO Tony Santo.

Close to 100 current Dresden employees will also be retained at the new casino.

The proposed Cascades Casino Chatham will feature over 300 slots and 10 table games, as well as a restaurant and buffet.

“It's more than just a casino, we look at it more as an entertainment facility,” says Santo. “The community of Chatham Kent won't have to travel outside of town to enjoy their favourite table game."

Chatham-Kent Mayor Randy Hope is excited about the economic spin-off which he believes will benefit the entire region.

“We're looking at maybe with it being here, our convention conference centre will become busier, our hotels will become busier, other businesses that are in the area will become busier," says Hope.

The new build will also likely bring a bigger hosting cheque to the municipality. Chatham-Kent currently gets about $700,000 a year from the OLG. It's expected that number will jump above a million dollars with Cascades.

Santo hopes they can begin construction this summer. But Gateway still needs rezoning and permit approvals from the municipality, and the blessing of the provincial government before the election begins.

The new casino is scheduled to open in the summer of 2019.

The Dresden Slots facility would close at that time, but the racetrack will still operate under the Dresden Agricultural Society.

Gateway also has properties in Langley, Penticton and Kamloops B.C., with plans to open more in Ontario.