The recent gambling expansion is focused on legalized sports betting. Revenues crashed after all casinos closed in March 2020 due to the pandemic. As a result, expansion had come to a halt years before. But now, things are returning to a more casino experience. Here’s a look at New England Gambling Expansion Past and Present.
(Coming Soon) Related Post – NEW ENGLAND GAMBLING HISTORY – A TIMELINE
New England Expansion Winners Throughout The Years
Massachusetts is a significant expansion winner. MGM Springfield & Encore Boston Harbor, two of the most prominent players in the casino industry, are anchoring the Bay State. In addition, they both bring lots of industry experience to the Massachusetts market.
Rhode Island casinos are winners with the addition of sports betting. New Hampshire became the second state to have sports betting in 2019. Rhode Island has added mobile betting, with the Granite State going mobile soon after.
Related Post – NETimeGambling is Comparing Rhode Island and New Hampshire Sports Betting.
The following state legalized sports betting and introduced full online gambling recently in Connecticut. With an amended pact with both tribes, online sports betting, gaming, and mobile availability have pushed the Constitution State ahead of the rest.
Related Post – iGaming Will Put Connecticut On Top In New England.
Competition Makes The Players The Real Winners
Before the pandemic hit the country in 2020, New England Casino Expansion had produced one major group of winners – New England’s resident gamblers. Competition between the three southern New England states gives New England residents lots of new gambling options & choices. In addition, links to reward clubs such as MLife, Wynn Red Card, and the change of Penn National to Choice Rewards give a national connection from coast to coast.
Promotions and entertainment offerings have grown to normalcy across New England. Visitation has grown since the summer, along with more events and conventions scheduled.
Plainridge Casino Is Caught In Between
Plainridge Park Casino and Raceway could be the biggest loser. This quaint first Massachusetts casino in Plainville, Massachusetts, opened in 2015. Penn National has been building loyal patrons since, slowly increasing revenue to surrounding communities and the Bay State. However, Plainridge has one glaring problem: slots only and no hotel.
And they are surrounded by competition. Twin River Casino & Hotel is ten minutes away with over twice the slots, many table games, and more dining options. Renamed Bally’s Twin River Lincoln Hotel and Casino, that property is now beginning to expand its flagship property, further putting Plainridge at a further competitive disadvantage. In addition, rumor has it that Rhode Island is planning a significant expansion at its Tiverton casino.
Encore Boston Harbor also presents problems for Plainridge. The newest New England Casino is only 50 minutes away – a big, beautiful resort offering all the amenities and gambling options you’d expect from Wynn Resorts. Encore Boston Harbor continues to attract more and more patrons, some from the loyal Plainridge patrons.
Will Plainridge Ever Get Live Table Games?
A pair of Massachusetts lawmakers have launched a new effort to transform Plainridge Park Casino into a full-blown casino with table games after the state’s only commercial slot parlor had a nightmare year in 2020. Suppose the recently introduced bills succeed in the state Legislature. In that case, they will authorize the Massachusetts Gaming Commission to allow the addition of up to 30 table games and 250 slot machines at Plainridge.
Efforts for expanding Plainridge’s gambling options were made after the slot-only casino had a terrible year in 2020 in terms of revenue. The facility recorded a 46% drop in revenue last year to $82.2 million. The reported figure was down $70 million from the venue’s gaming proceeds in 2019.
Many Casinos That Never Made It
New England has had more casino proposals not come to fruition than Las Vegas. Below are some of the casino renditions of those that never made it past the proposals. Does anyone remember these?
More Proposals Never to be Seen
- Penn National Casino in Springfield, MA (2013)
- Caesars Casino proposal in Boston, MA (2013) partnering with Suffolk Downs
- Hard Rock International Casino proposal in West Springfield MA (2013)
- Nunes/Foxwoods Casino proposal in Milford MA (2013)
- Rush Gaming Slots-only proposal in Worcester MA (2013)
- Racino proposal in Scarborough ME (2013)
- Cordish Gaming Slots-only proposal in Foxboro MA (2013)
- Penn National opts out of Casino in Springfield, MA, to set sites on slots-only in Plainville (2013)
- New Hampshire proposed three separate casinos (2012, 2013, 2015), but no bill was passed.
- The Passamaquoddy Tribe and the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians casino proposals ME
- Mohegan Sun Casino proposal for Revere MA (after MGM was chosen for Springfield (2014)
- Maine Casino Proposal @Scarborough Downs (2014)
- York Casino Proposal ME (2015, 2017)
For now, there are nine casinos in New England. It is taking all of 2021 to find normalcy. But, revenue is ramping up past 2019 numbers. So, the outlook is good for the larger casinos.