MGM Springfield has broken ground. The process to turn 16 acres of the North End of Springfield into a multi-use plan that includes an exciting and lively residential, retail, dining, and entertainment district.
Connecticut’s response has been to introduce a third casino near the northern border to save jobs and revenue from escaping to Springfield. It will be a daunting task to compete with MGM.
For more info, try reading these previous posts:
Now, the latest is that Kevin Dillon, the executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority, said Wednesday that space at the Sheraton Hartford Hotel at the airport could be turned into an “interim casino” while a permanent gaming venue is built at Bradley. Interim casino means an urgent concern.
While the third casino, a joint venture between the two Connecticut tribes that own the two Mega-Casino complexes in the South-Eastern portion of the state, seems to raise the ante of competition, a quick-fix is not the solution. Windsor Locks and three other municipalities — East Windsor, East Hartford and Hartford — have proposed locations for a satellite casino that would be jointly run by Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun.
But I’ve said once and I’ll say it again. A casino at Bradley International Airport is not the place for the third casino. Why? I’ll tell you why:
- The large amount of visitors through the airport will not be a draw for the casino. A busy airport just translates into more people switching to flights, rushing for departures and arriving only to rush home or to their destination. None of these people would rather play at Bradley International Airport Sheraton Casino instead of driving 20 minutes north to MGM Springfield. NONE!
- The traffic concerns around the airport are enough to make Mass gamblers stay in Massachusetts and CT gamblers stay away. Too much traffic, not easy to get to, and not easy to get away from as compared to other sites being considered.
- Loyal Sun & Foxwoods gamblers are not going to opt to visit a miniature version forced into a makeshift casino in a hotel. Those who do will just be waiting for MGM to open, and those who don’t will visit their usual casino in Uncasville, Mashentucket, or even Lincoln, RI.
The most important concern for this project is to do it right the first time. Consideration away from the airport is most important. There are no casinos in airports – hasn’t anyone wondered why?
Oh, by the way, MaCarran Airport in Las Vegas has slot machines, but it doesn’t count. GAS STATIONS and GROCERY STORES even have slots in them in Nevada.
Bottom line, bad idea. MGM Springfield will scoop up the border area gamblers and western Massachusetts with a half-@%$ed quick fix.