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Economy

Las Vegas Gets Ready for Its Next Act

At a summit for California tech executives and entrepreneurs, Vegas officials and evangelists pitched the dream of transforming the desert city into a tech hub. 

The Las Vegas suburb of Summerlin, where a contingent of city boosters made their case for luring California tech execs.

The Las Vegas suburb of Summerlin, where a contingent of city boosters made their case for luring California tech execs.

Photographer: Mona Shield Payne, courtesy of Howard Hughes Corporation

This article is part of an occasional series about the New Geography of Technology. Read earlier installments on Milan, Tel Aviv and Shanghai.

The dusty drive out to the base of Nevada’s Red Rock Canyon was once dubbed the road to nowhere. About 12 miles from the glitz of the Las Vegas Strip, this was an undeveloped patch of sun-parched desert through the 1980s; now, mansions of the city’s richest residents — Celine Dion and Marc Andreessen reportedly among them — are threaded among the suburban streets and cul-de-sacs of a 22,500-acre master-planned community called Summerlin.