Hard Rock Pearl Street Plans Stir Up Controversy

(SIOUX CITY, IA) - A bit of controversy is stirring around the Hard Rock Casino plan, specifically construction along Pearl Street.

Sioux City's Planning and Zoning Commission rejected Sioux City Entertainment's proposal to change Pearl Street between Third and Fourth on Tuesday.

The decision came as a surprise to Bill Warner, the President of Sioux City Entertainment. He says he thought everyone was on board with the plans.
The casino's Pearl Street plans would turn the street into a narrow thoroughfare similar to Fourth Street along the Promenade Theatre. But the casino would ditch the street side parking that's there now. That stretch of Pearl between Third and Fourth would be Hard Rock's property, essentially getting rid of the city's control of the section of the street. "It wouldn't be a city street anymore. It would be under Hard Rock's control. We wouldn't remove any of the snow. We wouldn't be liable for anything involved with that private property now," said Justin Vondrak, Sioux City Assistant Attorney. "The compromise was to have the street vacated, but to have a thoroughfare in the parking area to clearly designate a way from Third to Fourth Street on the land effectively that is Pearl today, but it just allows everything to flow a little bit better than maintaining the street in its full entirety," said Warner.
City council has the last say in the decision. Members will vote whether to keep Pearl Street the same or let Hard Rock change it on June 3.