Gateway’s proposal to build a full-blown gambling complex on the Kingsway may soon bite the dust. A Sudbury group called No Casino Sudbury tries to build up enough public support from the locals in an effort to stop the C$60 million project. The casino naysayers have a number of arguments in their bags and they want more public consultation around the new casino project, so that they can present the disadvantages of hosting a casino and discuss their concerns.
This Wednesday evening, the anti-casino group held its first public town hall meeting at St. Andrew’s Place. More than 70 people attended the meeting in order to hear the group’s stance on the matter, file questions or share a personal experience. Thus far, the anti-casino lobby reportedly signed up nearly 2,000 Sudburians, who also took an anti-casino stance on the matter.
Ruby Lougheed Yawney, who runs her own business and is also the person behind the group, explained that the list of supporters is constantly growing and currently it gathered the support of 5 times more people in comparison to the petition presented by No Casino Toronto. It is interesting to explain that No Casino Toronto is also an anti-casino group, which opposed the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation’s (OLG) modernization plan, and more precisely the construction of a full-fledged gambling facility in Toronto.
Why Sudburians Oppose Gateway’s Casino Construction Proposal
Among all other things, the anti-casino group No Casino Sudbury pointed out that the presence of a casino in a family-oriented city is inappropriate. Moreover, Gateway plans to build its premier gambling complex on the Kingsway, just next to the city’s arena, which is a family-oriented amenity. The group argued that the council should reconsider its decision.
Last but not least, No Casino Sudbury explained that the presence of a casino is to cause a number of social problems and it is to have a negative effect on the local economy. The group added that the city is not a tourist destination and the main visitors of the casino are expected to be the locals. Casino Free Sudbury, another anti-casino movement led by the business owner Tom Fortin, added that Gateway’s casino is to increase the gambling losses, which means people are to spend less at the local bars and restaurants. In that sense, the presence of a casino is to hit the profitability of the local business.
As it can be recalled, Canada’s major gambling operator Gateway Casinos and Entertainment announced its plans to replace the worn-out slots at Sudbury Downs with a full-blown gambling complex, that is to offer also non-gambling amenities. The move came shortly after Gateway took over the assets of the North Gaming Bundle that includes Sudbury Downs and casinos in Thunder Bay and Sault Ste.