Representatives with Gateway Casinos and the B.C. Lottery Corporation (BCLC) told the Delta Chamber of Commerce that Gateway’s proposed casino/hotel complex for the Delta Town & Country Inn site in Ladner has clearly been identified. The City of Richmond, which is a home to another big gambling facility operated by Great Canadian Gaming Corporation, is up in arms over the operator’s plan to build a casino south of the Fraser. Richmond Council considers the proximity of a competing casino is to cannibalize the revenue of the already existing River Rock Casino.
The City of Richmond reiterated its opposition to the construction of a full-fledged gambling facility south of the Fraser. Richmond Council announced its negative stance on the matter regarding the construction of a new entertainment center even before BCLC selected Delta for a preferred site for the construction of a new gambling facility. In November 2016, BCLC officially stated that Delta is its preferred location for a new entertainment facility south of the Fraser.
Delta Councilors Oppose New Casinos in the Region
On Nov. 25, 2016, Richmond council sent a report to the BCLC and the Corporation of Delta, suggesting that “any casino in Delta should be located sufficiently away from Richmond”. It was further explained that the idea is to protect the existing River Rock Casino, considered to be a stable and sure source of revenue.
Richmond’s letter opposing the construction of new casinos in the region vexed Delta councilors Last September, Delta received a preliminary approval for the construction of a casino at Town & Country Inn. BCLC explained that the corporation gave the go-ahead for the Delta Town & Country Inn after listening to the opinion of the community and municipality.
Moreover, BCLC together with a third-party consultant conducted a research, which found out that the proposed site would generate revenue without hurting the profitability of the other gambling facilities in Richmond, Surrey and New Westminster. BCLC’s Chris Fairclough explained that Gateway’s casino proposal is to deploy the full potential of the market, but not “take from my left hand and giving it to my right hand”.
Recently, BCLC wrote a letter to Delta council, reminding that Delta needs to discuss Gateway’s casino plan for the construction of a casino/hotel complex with affected municipalities within five kilometers of the proposed gaming facility in order to move Gateway’s casino project forward. Gateway’s rezoning application is expected to appear on Delta councilors’ desks after the city holds several public meetings on the application. The first public meeting is scheduled to take place on 1st February at the Harris Barn in Ladner from 4 to 8 p.m.