Muslims are being urged to drop opposition to a Birmingham super-casino in return for a promise that the project will regenerate a run-down inner city area.
City council leaders are conducting a charm offensive in an effort to swing support behind Birmingham City Football Club's planned £217 million stadium and casino development at Saltley.
Ken Hardeman, cabinet regeneration member, has recently met councillors and community leaders from the largely Muslim-populated areas of Bordesley Green, Sparkbrook and Small Heath.
Coun Hardeman (Con Brandwood) admitted there was concern among people living near to the site of the Blues' new ground, since the Islamic faith bans gambling.
But he believes a regional casino will act as a major driver for regeneration by bringing wealth, jobs and new development to an economically and socially deprived area.
Coun Hardeman said: "I think there is a persuasive case to be made to the community that the Birmingham City option would bring in a considerable number of new facilities to the area. The communities have to weigh up the benefit of major capital investment against faith issues."
Birmingham City Council meets tomorrow and is expected to support in principle a bid to the Government for a regional casino. A clear majority of the 120 councillors are likely to back the idea.
The council is seeking to promote a regional casino off the back of a "big bang" strategy.
Coun Hardeman said that by approving a regional casino, in a building of up to 20,000 sqm with 40 gaming tables, the council would be able to use new powers under the Gambling Act to refuse permission for additional casinos in Birmingham.
This would prevent a " proliferation" of smaller casinos in sensitive inner city areas, he said.
The Blues' chance of securing a casino could fall foul of Muslim sensitivities and an emerging cross-party belief that a major gambling centre would be better placed at the National Exhibition Centre in Solihull.
Councillor Ayoub Khan (Lib Dem Aston) said: "There is a high degree of concern among the Muslim population.
"My view is that we have enough problems in terms of drugs, crime, poor education and deprivation and we don't want any more.
"A casino could work at the NEC and I wouldn't object to that. But I certainly would object to a casino anywhere in the inner city area."
One option under consideration is using profits from an NEC casino toward the cost of re-housing Birmingham City.
Coun Hardeman said: "A considerable number of members feel that a casino at the NEC wouldn't be close to housing and therefore wouldn't have the same impact as a casino at Saltley. My argument is that a casino would attract thousands of people and we want them to be coming into Birmingham.
"I can't see people driving out to the NEC just to visit a casino."
Tomorrow's meeting, which will not choose a site, is the first step in a long and uncertain road.
The Government is yet to confirm whether it will allow regional casinos. Even if it does, Birmingham City Council will not have the power to grant itself planning permission.
That decision is likely to be taken by the Government based on a recommendation from the West Midlands Regional Assembly.
A report to the meeting suggests talks should be held among the seven West Midlands district councils in an attempt to strike a deal about an agreed bid for a regional casino in Birmingham.
The report warns of fears that a casino may encourage gambling addiction, particularly among vulnerable groups.