A knockoff of New York City's East Village in Las Vegas -- with its own version of the city's Meatpacking District and Washington Square is planned for 44 acres at the northwest corner of Tropicana Avenue and Paradise Road, converting the conspicuously idle acreage into a nearly 1 million-square-foot office-and-retail project.

The 27-building, 959,645-square-foot, retail-office-entertainment complex is being developed by Mark Advent, a developer of the New York-New York hotel-casino.

Advent said the developers plan to work with McCarran International Airport to have East Village designated as an alternative check-in point, where airport passengers could check bags and receive boarding passes

The project is currently scheduled to break ground in the first quarter of 2007 and open as soon as mid-2008.

Resort developer Eighth Wonder is launching East Village, a $320 million project that will be the first non-gaming entertainment development in Las Vegas. It will feature themed retail, restaurant and entertainment tenants, and build the city's first free-standing, 2,000-seat theatre-in-the-round.

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