BALTIMORE (AP) — The Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission says the Rocky Gap Casino Resort can add 54 slot machines and create a new outdoor gambling area.

The commission approved the expansion Thursday in Baltimore. The casino near Cumberland plans to place 24 of the machines on its existing gambling floor and 30 in a three-sided outdoor area.

The expansion will bring the number of slots at Rocky Gap to 631.

The commission also approved a proposed, $128 million merger between Rocky Gap owner Lakes Entertainment Inc. of Minnetonka, Minnesota, and the Golden Gaming unit of Las Vegas-based Sartini Gaming, Inc. The companies have said they hope to close the deal by year-end. Rocky Gap would become the property of a new, publicly traded company, Golden Entertainment Inc.

(Copyright 2015 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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