The Quapaw Tribe welcomed visitors to its expanded Downstream Casino Resort in Oklahoma on Friday soon after the release of a study that estimated the facility's economic impact on the region where Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas intersect over the past five years at more than $1 billion.
According to the independent study by KlasRobinson Q.E.D. of Minneapolis, Minnesota, the casino has pumped more than $225 million into the economy annually since its July 2008 opening. In the past half-decade, it has created more than 1,640 permanent jobs with total annual workers’ earnings of over $58 million.
“Five and a half years ago we stood out here in the woods and announced what we hoped to achieve: To create something that would benefit all the communities by providing good jobs, a foundation for sustainable economic development, and to serve as a good citizen and community partner,” said Downstream Chairman John Berrey at a news conference Friday to share the study’s results.
The announcement came the same week the tribe debuted its renovations including a $150 million 152-room Kappa Tower, which includes the elegant Neé Spa and other new upscale amenities. The expanded property has also created some 1,300 construction jobs to date.
Matthew Robinson, principal of KlasRobinson Q.E.D., who researched and wrote the economic report, said, “The results of our study reveal an impressive achievement. It indicates that Downstream could serve as a model for Indian Gaming's potential in creating regional economic development."
The resort's future annual economic impact is projected at over $300 million. “We still have a long way to go, but I think these results show that we are doing pretty well so far,” said Berrey, The Miami News-Record reported.