North Bay would soon welcome its first casino venue managed by Gateway Casinos & Entertainment and there has been controversy surrounding it ever since the announcement of the plans. Planned protests against the new venue involving protected turtles would be scrapped as an idea, making way for an educational panel on May 25. The Save the Turtle, Stop the Casino group changed its approach to a more peaceful one.
World Turtle Day is a time to take into consideration the protection of turtles all around the world and put efforts into creating a better future for them. The group seeking brighter days for the Blanding’s turtle in North Bay recently announced it is going to dedicate the upcoming day of celebration to protest against the new casino venue that is projected to launch operation in 2020. An educational panel was also projected to take place on that day.
No Protest on May 23
Initial plans for taking matters to the streets and organizing a protest on Thursday were recently nixed, as the group management preferred to keep things as peaceful as possible. Their focus would now be on educating the community on the health risks for many turtles and the smiling one in particular, as the local Blanding’s turtle is commonly referred to.
The group spokesperson Greg Gray pointed out that the day should not be marred by protests when the individuals could focus on influencing people’s mindset and ensuring that they are aware of the true scope of the issue. As Casino Reports announced earlier, the new casino venue that could launch operation next year is located on the natural habitat of said turtles that are protected by the Endangered Species Act.
The boasting new venue and all the traffic it would generate are bound to have an effect on the natural habitat of the smiling turtles. Gateway Casinos had previously established they are ready to collaborate with the provincial government and come up with a mutually beneficial solution, but at the end of the day, the pinpointed location remained the same.
Casino Venue Threatens Blanding’s Turtle Habitat
Pinewood Park Drive is about to see the construction of the new CA$31.1-million casino complex featuring gaming, as well as more family-friendly offerings. Save the Turtle, Stop the Casino had plans for shutting the nearby highway in order to prove a point. However, now the change of heart brought the news that the main road is going to remain open.
The congregation is about to take place on May 25 and 26 giving enough time for all activities to attract as many local enthusiasts as possible. They are welcome to join the crowd at 10 a.m. at the La Vase Portages Conservation Area near Highway 17 East. With the help of a Facebook page, the organization would seek more attention to the endangered species in the region.
It could be recalled that the months leading to the end of 2018 saw strong opposition of locals. Back then, the City Hall voted twice in support of the casino venue in North Bay while locals maintained their opposition. Reactions ranged from open outrage to people disappointed that their best interest remained unprotected.