A gigantic addition to the Las Vegas Strip is a one-stop stimulus package for a city and state walloped by the recession and an $8.5 billion bet that happy days are near again. With 12,000 jobs, the CityCenter project—a kaleidoscope of condominiums, boutique hotels, shopping, and, of course, gambling—is the “single biggest hiring opportunity in the history of the US,” a rep tells Time, and with Nevada’s 13.2% unemployment, its December opening can’t come soon enough.
MGM Mirage has seen plenty of bad luck, including worker deaths and questions about CityCenter’s financing. It says that’s squared away, though, and that half the 2,440 condos are spoken for. In any case, the credit climate makes another such project unlikely anytime soon. “It’s one of the nicest hotels, not only in Las Vegas but in the country,” says one new hire. “Regardless of the rough economy, I think we’ll still be successful.”