An illustration of the Wilton Rancheria's Elk Grove casino-resort project. 

Elk Grove city officials on Dec. 7 announced that Boyd Elk Grove, LLC purchased the former site of the abandoned Outlet Collection at Elk Grove mall.

This purchased land on Promenade Parkway is adjacent to the 36-acre property that is owned in federal trust for the Wilton Rancheria’s casino-resort project.

Elk Grove, LLC, which is an entity of the Las Vegas-based Boyd Gaming Corp., acquired this 64-acre property from the Woodlands, Texas-based Howard Hughes Corp. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed in the announcement.

The mall project, nicknamed “The Ghost Mall,” sat partially constructed on the property for 11 years before being demolished last year.

Wilton Rancheria is currently in a partnership with Boyd Gaming to develop their gaming project on those 36 acres.

Keith Smith, president and CEO of Boyd Gaming, said in a press statement that the purchase further strengthens the company’s dedication to the Elk Grove community and the Wilton Rancheria tribe.

“This investment demonstrates our continuing commitment to the Wilton Rancheria tribe and the Elk Grove community,” he stated. “By acquiring this parcel, the tribe and Boyd Gaming believe we will have the most dynamic casino and hospitality development site in all of Northern California.”

Wilton Rancheria Tribal Chair Jesus Tarango praised Boyd Gaming for purchasing the former outlet mall site.

“The purchasing of this land is just huge to us and it shows Boyd Gaming’s commitment to us in developing our project,” he said in an interview with the Citizen. “We appreciate our partners. I think a lot of people talk about things, but Boyd Gaming actually moves with their actions.

“We’re in the best position that the tribe could be in to ultimately break ground and get things moving here in our near future.”

Tarango also expressed appreciation for the city of Elk Grove’s support of that project.

Asked about how the recently purchased property will be used, Tarango told the Citizen that any question pertaining to the development of that land should be directed to Boyd Gaming.

Boyd Gaming spokesperson David Strow told the Citizen that the company has no comment on whether there are currently any development plans on this property.

“Our CEOs quote in the press release speaks for itself,” he said. “We have nothing further to add at this time.”

Elk Grove City Manager Jason Behrmann responded to the sale of the property.

“While we are disappointed that (Howard Hughes) was unable to deliver on their mall project for our community, we are excited for the opportunity to work with Boyd Gaming to make the best use of this long-neglected property in our city,” he wrote in the city’s press statement. “This sale offers a fresh start and a new opportunity to develop something with a group who shares the city’s vision for the site and its potential as a regional destination.”