Last year, Sudbury City Council thumbed up the final site plan for the Kingsway Entertainment District. The project is to include the construction of the city’s new events center, a casino and hotel tower, as well as restaurants and an outdoor Festival Square. On 22nd January this year, the planning committee is to hold its first public hearing regarding the land-use planning applications for the arena and casino. According to reliable sources, there will be a second public hearing later this year.
Gateway Casinos and Entertainment, the gambling company behind the casino project in Sudbury, and the city of Greater Sudbury have already submitted their applications for rezoning to the planning committee. The new public arena is to spread over approximately 11.96 hectares of land, while the casino is to occupy approximately 6.96 hectares of land.
If the rezoning eventually gets approved, the city and the gambling company will be allowed to put the wheels in motion and start realizing the project. It was reported that both applications are related to lands on the north side of the Kingsway and northwest of Levesque Street in Sudbury. Citizens will be given the chance to express their opinion on the rezoning.
Casino Opponents Lock Horns with Supporters
Gateway’s plan to build a large-scale gambling entertainment on the Kingsway in Sudbury has turned into a sizzling hot topic. The project has been strongly debated by both opponents and supporters. While some tout the broad economic benefits of hosting a casino in Sudbury, others warn of the costs, which the society might need to pay. Casino naysayers joined forces to counter the movement of putting up a casino in Sudbury.
Earlier this month, the casino opponents launched their next weapon against the casino project. The group that calls themselves No Casino Sudbury hosted a town hall meeting at St. Andrew’s Place to discuss their concerns and warn local people about the downside of hosting an entertainment complex in Sudbury.
The group explained that the locals have never been consulted on the matter. Some of the group’s members argue that the casino is to increase problem gambling among Sudburians, while others explained that the entertainment complex is to hurt the local economy. The anti-casino campaigners asked for more public consultation around the new multi-million entertainment complex, allowing locals to learn more about the hidden threats of hosting a gambling center on the Kingsway alongside the family-oriented arena.
Gateway responded to the casino opponents’ claims, explaining that the city has the potential to host a casino. Apart from that, the casino operator pointed out that its casino staff is highly-trained to notice the symptoms of gambling addiction and help vulnerable players. It is interesting to note that Gateway’s casino project include both gambling and non-gambling amenities.
In that way, the entertainment center is to capitalize on the opportunity to attract both gambling and non-gambling tourists. This means that multiple other local businesses are to increase their profitability, as more non-Sudburians are expected to visit the city. The entertainment complex has been put a C$60-million price tag.