Soboba's Replacement Casino Taking Shape

The Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians replacement casino and resort project is starting to show off its design as framing is almost complete and preparation for roofing is taking place.

"Concrete work is 100 percent done and structural steel installation is 100 percent done," said Tom Groenendal, Senior Superintendent for C.W. Driver. "The majority of the framing is done and we will start the roofing soon."

He said each of those events are milestones in any construction project and he is glad to see good progress being made. It will take two months or less to complete all the roofing, which is made from thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO). These single-ply roofing membranes are among the fastest growing commercial roofing products and have gained broad industry acceptance for their many performance and installation advantages. As demand increases for heat-reflective and energy-efficient roofing systems, TPO single-ply roofing membranes continue to provide exceptional resistance to ultraviolet, ozone and chemical exposure.

Very visible from outside is the gold-colored DensGlass sheathing that has been installed to almost all outer walls of the project. This fiberglass mat gypsum sheathing has an exemplary track record that spans more than 30 years. It is a preferred substrate due to its ability to protect a structure against moisture damage during and after construction.

The project's work crew has grown to about 300 members and will double in the next month or so as the inner workings of the casino resort project start being installed.

"We are doing really good on the construction side," Groenendal said. "The Tribe is very attentive to taking care of any needs and the community has been very supportive."

There are three areas of construction concentration: casino, hotel and back-of-house operations. Each call for a distinct set of specifications and has its own dedicated crew of experts. Mold-resistant drywall is being added from the top down in some areas while fireproof material is being sprayed onto beams in other areas.

Building engineer Mike Wittmer, who primarily works at the back-of-house project area, said third-party inspectors are on site every day checking on each phase of operation to be sure everything is done per code and per specifications.

Along with the replacement casino and hotel, there will be three meeting rooms and a large banquet/conference room that can be converted into four conference break-out rooms, a food court, multiple indoor and outdoor eating and seating areas, a center bar and a cabaret with an additional bar, entertainment area, warehouse, supporting back-of-house offices and conference rooms. Guests will have a variety of opportunities to gather and enjoy the beautiful views of the San Jacinto Mountains to the north and the Soboba Springs Country Club golf course to the south.

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