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Hard Rock is jumping into a new venture that would bring the company to Summit County.
Hard Rock International announced Thursday that it will partner with Northfield Park to create a gambling facility at the harness racing track
The $275 million project will continue as long as Ohio wins an ongoing lawsuit that opposes racetrack slot machines.
The potential gambling facility would include a music venue, steakhouse and Hard Rock Cafe.
The project is expected to bring about 1,000 jobs to Summit County.
On the Web: www.hardrock.com
Video slot machines are coming to Ohio racetracks, like Northfield Park...and Summit County Council is fully behind the gaming machines.
Council voted nearly unanimously Monday night to support video slot machines at the track on the Northern Summit County border.
Council president Jerry Feeman says the investment in Northfield Park would multiply through the area and the county.
"The investment that will come to the small business owners, the restaurants, gas stations," Feeman tells AkronNewsNow.com, "different things that would support all the folks going to that area."
FeemanKostandarasForANN 1121 by Akron NewsNow
But not everyone on council was making the bet on Northfield Park's video slot future.
Council member Gloria Rodgers voted against the resolution.
"I have a concern for the social ills that gambling brings into an area," Rodgers tells AkronNewsNow.com. "It's been proven that that occurs on a regular basis."
Gloria Rodgers with ANN's Mike Ward by Akron NewsNow
Council member Nick Kostandaras, who represents the area in council district 1, says slots at Northfield Park would be important for the economy in Northern Summit County...and vital to the racetrack's survival.
"Not only is it going to increase revenue around the area and in Summit County", Kostandaras says, "but it will bring jobs, over 1,200 construction jobs, over one thousand permanent jobs."
But Rodgers says expanded gambling will actually cost the county money.
"It's going to cost us a lot of money to take care of the fallout that occurs from gambling," Rodgers says. "That's been proven time and time again."
She says the county should wait, in any event, until pending litigation over the slots plan is resolved.
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