tribe Tejon chooses companies to guide the hotel-casino project | New


The proposed $ 600 million casino and hotel near Highway 99 south of Bakersfield took another step forward on Monday with the announcement of the project’s design and construction team, including all three members have experience in play and hospitality facilities.

The Indian tribe Tejon said in a press release that The PENTA Building Group, based in Los Angeles, will serve as the general contractor while Klai Juba Wald, based in Las Vegas, will be the principal architect. Friedmutter Group Architecture & Interior Design Studios, also based in Las Vegas, was chosen as the design architect and interior decorator.

The announcement came just over six months after the federal government approved a key part of the hotel-casino project. Construction is tentatively expected to begin in a year and last for 18 months, assuming the California governor gives it the go-ahead in the next 5 and a half months or so.

Since the tribe received federal recognition in 2012, they have partnered with Hard Rock International to help them develop and manage the casino hotel, which is expected to include a 166,500 square foot game room and hotel. of 11 floors with 400 rooms. The plans also include a convention space, an event center, restaurants and an RV park at the project site in Mettler.

Monday’s statement did not identify all of the companies that will help with the construction, but it suggested the work would be handled at least in part by unionized construction workers living in Kern County.

“Rest assured that subcontractors, suppliers, vendors, local building trades and organized workers will be part of the construction of our project,” Octavio Escobedo, president of the Tejon tribe, said in the statement.

A senior Kern County labor official said on Monday he was “very optimistic” that the project would be built by the unions, based on statements made by the tribe early on. He added that such an agreement would be contained in a working agreement of the project which should be initiated by the general contractor.

“We hope they will use our local contractors and therefore use our local people,” said John Spaulding, executive secretary of the Kern, Inyo and Mono County Building and Construction Trades Council. “We will keep this local money.”

The casino hotel has been adopted by the Kern County government and the local business community since it was officially proposed years ago.

The tribe plans to build the project on 52 acres of a 306-acre parcel it owns northwest of South Sabodan and Wild Flower streets. The property would also house administrative offices, a health care facility, housing, and a common sheriff and fire station.

Construction-related employment is estimated at around 900 jobs. More than 2,000 people are expected to work at the site all the time, said Hard Rock project manager Scott Neilson.

Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Tara Sweeney signed a decision minutes Jan. 8 concluding that the proposed site is suitable for the tribe’s plans. The governor of California has one year from signing this document to decide whether to approve the federal action and, if he does, to also sign an agreement with the tribe specifying how the casino would be operated.

“We hope it doesn’t take a year,” Neilson said, adding that the tribe is reviewing designs and budgets in the meantime while seeking funding. “These processes are running in parallel.”

Escobedo noted that PENTA has built more than $ 8 billion in gaming and hospitality projects and noted that the company has extensive experience working with tribes and has “extensive knowledge of sub- local and regional contractors and building trades that we will need to build our project “.

PENTA President John Cannito said in the same statement that large-scale hotel and casino projects such as the Tejon Indian Tribe are a “core competency” for the company, and the company looks forward to it. to deliver a “world class property that we will all be proud of.”

Escobedo said Klai Juba Wald has designed some of the most beautiful and iconic projects in the hospitality industry and that the tribe looks forward to working with the company, which added in the statement that they have a long-standing relationship. date with Hard Rock International.

The Friedmutter Group, a leading design, architecture and planning firm, specializes in large multi-purpose hotels and condominiums, casinos, entertainment, retail and high rise buildings.

Escobedo described the benefits of the project in terms of boosting the tribe’s economic self-sufficiency and social justice, as well as jobs that he said would strengthen the economy of Kern County.

“Thousands of permanent jobs and millions of dollars spent with local suppliers will continue to improve the local economy for years to come,” he said.

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