Sports Betting Coming Soon at Presque Isle Downs & Casino

More than four months after being granted a license by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, construction work at Presque Isle Downs & Casino in Erie indicates that the property will soon be ready to go live with sports betting.

The state gaming regulator approved the casino’s bid to operate sports gambling in February. However, unlike other Pennsylvania properties which launched their sportsbooks within about two months after getting regulatory approval, Presque Isle is taking a bit more time to prepare its casino floor for the addition of a betting facility.

Local news outlet GoErie reported that construction workers have been assembling the metal frame that would soon form a sportsbook. The facility will occupy 1,275 square feet of space, an area that previously featured slot machines. Those have been relocated to other parts of the casino.

An official for Bauer Specialties, the construction company tapped to establish the sportsbook, told GoErie that its workers are expected to finish work by Wednesday. Other indications that Presque Isle could soon go live with sports betting include the recently placed wall wraps that display the BetAmerica brand logo and read “coming soon.”

Officials for the casino have not provided a timeframe for the upcoming launch of the betting facility.

The Sportsbook

The betting facility is gradually taking shape near the poker room and simulcast area of the casino. But aside from the sportsbook, bettors will also be able to place their bets via 50 self-betting kiosks. Half of those will be located inside the facility itself.

Bauer Specialties workers have hung large, flatscreen televisions around the casino floor. Those will air live sports and odds, among other things.

Last Wednesday, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board granted a provisional interactive sports betting manufacturer license to KT Group Limited, the company that has agreed to provide self-betting kiosks to Presque Isle. The issuance of that license moved sports betting a step closer to going live at the Erie-based casino.

Commenting on when exactly the property will launch wagering services, Gaming Control Board spokesperson Richard McGarvey said that “that’s going to be up to them … they’ll tell us and then we’ll come out and make sure everything is working right.”

Under state gambling law, a casino needs to complete several important steps before being able to open a sportsbook, including a two-day testing period supervised by the gambling regulator.

Presque Isle’s sports betting facility will operate under the BetAmerica brand, and operations will be powered by sports betting technology provider SBTech.

BetAmerica is the wagering brand of the casino’s new owner – Churchill Downs Incorporated. The company completed the acquisition of the property from Eldorado Resorts this past January. Churchill Downs paid nearly $180 million for the casino and horse racing track.

The sports betting facility at Presque Isle will be smoke-free, but for the smoking portion of the property’s patrons, there will be self-betting kiosks at its Center Bar and Bar 90 where smoking is permitted.

Presque Isle has also revealed plans for online and mobile betting but that would come at a later stage.

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