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LAS VEGAS-MGM Mirage next week will reveal the design for its massive CityCenter development proposed for 66 acres on the Strip between Bellagio and Monte Carlo. This week, it said the $5-billion project would be the largest privately funded project in the history of the US, according to its consultants’ research.

MGM Mirage’s board or directors signed off on the project in November. The project is slated to include a 4,000-room casino-hotel, three 400-room boutique hotels, 550,000-sf of retail, dining and entertainment facilities and 1,650 units of for-sale housing, including luxury, hotel-condo and timeshare components.

The design and permitting phase is expected to take an additional nine months to complete. The construction of the first phase of the complex will take approximately 42 months with an opening anticipated in late 2009.

MGM says it will partner with residential developers, hotel operators and retailers in financing and operating the project. The initial phase is expected to create 7,000 construction jobs followed by 12,000 permanent positions. Further phases are envisioned over time on contiguous company-owned land.

MGM engaged three urban planning firms to create competing master plans for the site. After an eight-month process, the board selected the master plan design of Ehrenkrantz, Eckstut and Kuhn Architects, a New York-based firm known for master planning both Battery Park City in New York City and the Baltimore Inner Harbor East in Maryland. The project design will be revealed at a press conference scheduled for 11 a.m. next Thursday, September 15, in the Bellagio Grand Ballroom.

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