Canadian gambling operator Gateway Casinos and Entertainment received thumbs up from the city council to establish a C$60 million full-fledged gaming complex on the Kingsway. The project includes a hotel, a casino and many other non-gambling amenities, including restaurants, meeting rooms, bars and open green spaces. Among all other things, the proposed construction of a new arena was admired the most. The arena is most probably the aspect of the plan, which won the officials’ hearts to approve Gateway’s project.
On 22nd November, the new entertainment complex received a key approval for the construction of the Kingsway Entertainment District. The first steps are to rezone the Kingsway site and prepare a financial plan. The new complex is set to open doors in April 2020 supposing that everything goes according to schedule.
The casino operator is to invest C$60 million in the casino expansion plan. The first phase of the project includes the establishment of a casino, a hotel and a large arena, which is to feature 3,475 parking seats, 5,800 seats for hockey and 6,500 for concerts. The new arena is to replace the worn-out 4,600-seated Sudbury Community Arena. The three different parts of the project will be connected with a pedestrian bridge. It is important to note that the casino has still more room for expansion.
According to a city news release, Kingsway was chosen as the preferred location to host the new entertainment complex due to the number of parking lots and easy access. The city is to invest approximately C$100 million in improving the infrastructure and in the construction of the arena. The project is expected to be financially supported by private investors, as well.
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The new complex is expected to decrease the unemployment rate and boost the local economy. Apart from the economic benefits, Gateway’s project is to update the city’s appearance and attract more foreign visitors.
Mayor Brian Bigger said that the project is in line with the city plan to renovate the arena and bring more concerts and artists to Sudbury. Proponents of the casino expansion pointed out that this is a good economic bet. Furthermore, it is an investment in the future of the city, but not just a short-term revenue booster. The project also received a strong opposition from a number of people, who expressed concerns regarding the negative effects of a casino gambling such as social ills and increased crime rates. The entertainment complex fell behind schedule due to the number of hurdles, but it seems that Gateway’s day also came.