Jacobs Entertainment Inc.’s vision of turning the West 4th St. corridor into a new arts and entertainment district has taken another step forward with the upcoming demolition of the blighted Stardust Lodge motel. With the demolition, Jacobs Entertainment further cements themselves as active supporters in Reno’s downtown revitalization.
The demolition of the Stardust Lodge, scheduled to take place on Thursday, Nov. 16. at 11 a.m., will contribute to Jacobs Entertainment’s ongoing efforts to modernize the downtown corridor. The company also led the demolition of the dilapidated Carriage Inn and Donner Inn this September marking the beginning of the downtown corridor’s refresh.
The more than $500 million mixed-use redevelopment project known as the Fountain District includes properties that span along West 4th St from the Sands Regency to the Gold Dust West. The project also includes other city blocks along West 4th St. between West St. and Keystone Ave. Not only is the company hoping to transform this space into a new arts and entertainment district, but it aims to minimize downtown Reno’s poor housing conditions in the process.
“Many of the units we are demolishing were truly not habitable and this demolition is another step in our journey to redevelop West 4th Street into an urban district enjoyed by all,” Jonathan Boulware, regional vice president of Jacobs Entertainment, said.
Although there are many plans in the works to bring the redevelopment goal to fruition, the company is still cognizant of pressing community needs. Jacobs Entertainment is partnering with Econo Lodge, located at 1885 S. Virginia St. to provide any previous senior residents who may have been displaced with a long-term, affordable housing solution. The five-year arrangement includes renting out 50 units to help the displaced seniors. The seniors staying at the Econo Lodge will receive amenities consisting of weekly maid service, laundry services and a pool. Earlier this month, three seniors have already moved into Econo Lodge.
“It was important to us for these residents to be taken care of and have access to high-quality and cost-effective housing as we continue to refresh West 4th Street,” Boulware said. “After the completion of this project, we will be able to provide higher quality living conditions and safer conditions than what was there before. In the meantime, our CEO Jeff Jacobs has committed to providing rent assistance for each resident for five years.”
The partnership with Econo Lodge would not have been possible without the contributions of Mr. Daljit and Baljit Singh. The former is a previous owner of the Donner Inn which was sold to Jacobs Entertainment earlier this year.
“We want to publicly thank these gentlemen for being so eager to help these seniors living in substandard conditions at these old, run-down downtown motels,” Boulware said. “This is a long-term commitment that we are happy to have arranged with them. It means a great deal to us to get involved with community members to make this redevelopment project a win-win for the Reno community.”
Thursday’s demolition will also include a press conference. Councilwoman Neoma Jardon and representatives from Jacobs Entertainment are slated to speak at the event.
“The path to a better community starts with increasing its safety and reducing housing in sub-standard conditions,” said Councilwoman Neoma Jardon. “I’m proud to see that happening as a result of Jacobs Entertainment’s efforts and we are taking the correct steps toward a better community.”
Earlier this year, the Jacobs Family Foundation for Children pledged $500,000 to the Nevada Youth Empowerment Project. Also, Jacobs Entertainment, Inc. donated $1.5 million in affordable housing inventory and cash to the Reno Housing Authority.
“Reno is experiencing a lot of new and important developments,” Jeff Jacobs, the chief executive officer of Jacobs Entertainment, said. “We are happy and eager to contribute in any way that we can to create better living conditions in the region.”