The new blackjack industry in Pennsylvania casinos is going so well that casinos can’t get enough of them. Earlier in the year, a Pittsburgh casino requested permission from regulators to expand and add more blackjack tables. Today they got their answer.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has approved a plan by Rivers Casino to expand its table games and build a large ballroom that will total 15,000 square feet. The casino, located in Pittsburgh, requested that the regulatory agency allow them to add a dozen more blackjack tables in addition to four more poker tables and a few roulette tables.
According to Rivers Casino, adding the extra tables will allow them to hire 100 more employees. The casino plans to have the new tables installed and operating by the middle of March. Once the expansion is complete, Rivers will have the third-largest table games selection in the state, with 107 tables in total.
Until recently, Pennsylvania casinos could only carry slots and other electronic games. Tables games like blackjack were banned. However, last year the legislature passed a bill allowing table games in the state’s casinos. Last July, the first table games were unveiled to much fanfare. The state’s casinos have seen sharp improvements in revenue since adding table games.
It hasn’t been sunshine and lollipops, though. Adding popular games increases visitors good and bad. Early on, cheaters seemed intent on finding out if they could beat the blackjack dealers, perhaps thinking that new dealers wouldn’t be experienced enough to spot the cheating. They were wrong. There have also been a few cases of negligent parents leaving their children in the parking lots to go play games (usually slots). Those parents have been arrested and the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board banned them from all casinos.