CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Mayor Ron Corbett says he was "shocked" by Thursday morning's decision by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission to reject the proposal for a casino across from downtown.
"I certainly feel disappointed, as do many in the Cedar Rapids [and] Linn County area. Quite frankly, I'm shocked by their decision," Corbett said.
The Cedar Crossing proposal included a parking ramp and restaurants. Corbett said the 4-1 vote against the project will hurt more than just the casino.
"It was really going to help revitalize the west side of Cedar Rapids and assist us in flood protection. It was a big project, $130 million and any community would be disappointed to lose something like that," Corbett said.
Leaders, including businessman Steve Gray, first announced their intention to apply for a license in October 2012. Even then, Corbett says the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission indicated they wanted Cedar Rapids to apply.
"We were encouraged by the racing and gaming board to come forward with an application. They bent over backwards to pat us on the back over the last year. So, for them to pull the rug out from underneath us today was a bit surprising," Corbett said.