Clark County commissioners have approved plans for a sprawling industrial park south of Las Vegas that could flatten a shuttered hotel-casino.
The county commission on Wednesday gave the green light to a 1.9 million square foot warehouse and distribution complex along Interstate 15 in Jean, a remote outpost about 25 miles south of the Strip. whose only residents are inmates of a state prison.
The project, by Reno-based Tolles Development Co., would span more than 140 acres around the I-15/State Route 161 intersection, encompassing vacant land and other real estate, including the site of the Hotel-Casino du Terrible.
This establishment has been closed since the beginning of the pandemic, and plans say it would be torn down and replaced with a distribution center, according to a county staff report.
Tolles is under contract to buy the site for the project and hopes to break ground within the next 12 to 18 months, his partner Cory Hunt told the Review-Journal on Monday.
He also said the hotel would be demolished a few years after development began.
Warehouse developers have been on a building spree for years in southern Nevada, and business has only increased during the coronavirus pandemic as an accelerated shift to online shopping has fueled demand for retail space .
Industrial development in Jean would also provide job opportunities for residents of Sandy Valley, Goodsprings and Sloan, county staff said, pointing to tiny remote towns outside of Las Vegas.
Commissioners approved a zoning change and industrial park design review along with several other items in a vote on Wednesday, as part of the hearing’s “routine action items.”
Ahead of the vote, Commissioner Michael Naft, whose district encompasses most of the project site, including the closed hotel, instructed county staff to “review the cumulative effects” of the project to “ensure appropriate mitigation subsequent requests.
There is not much in Jean. As the Review-Journal reported in 2020, it has a cluster of government services and operations, including a small airport, courthouse, fire station, and post office.
Its only residents are the prisoners of the Jean Conservation Camp, a public facility that houses 240 inmates.
Clark County records and documents filed by Nevada Business Entities indicate that the project site is owned by the Herbst family, operator of the Terrible Herbst gas station chain.
Efforts to speak with a family representative were unsuccessful on Monday before the Review-Journal first reported on the industrial park project.
Le Terrible’s is Jean’s only hotel-casino and would be the last to be demolished. As county staff pointed out, “resort hotels may no longer be viable in this area.”
Earlier plans to build large in Jean failed. In early 2007, casino operator MGM Mirage announced a partnership with developer Henderson American Nevada Co. and timeshare operator Diamond Resorts to develop 166 acres in the city.
MGM had acquired two casinos in Jean – Gold Strike and Nevada Landing – in 2005 as part of a corporate buyout. A few years later, the three firms plan to build a hotel-casino and residential, commercial and retail spaces.
Nevada Landing was demolished, but the project went nowhere, as the partners ended their operating agreement in the summer of 2008 as the economy deteriorated.
MGM, now known as MGM Resorts International, reached an agreement in 2014 to sell Gold Strike and Jean’s “related assets” to the Herbst family for $12 million. The sale was completed in 2015.
The new owners launched a series of upgrades at Gold Strike and changed the name in 2018 to the flagship Herbst family brand.