MGM Unveils $3B Casino Proposal in Toronto

Published Wednesday, March 06, 2013 -

MGM has revealed its plan for a mega brick and mortar casino in Toronto Canada’s largest city. The proposed location is on the grounds of the Canadian National Exhibition which is an oasis in the city’s growing high rise condo developments. The move to get the casino in Toronto has been controversial with even the Department of Public Health coming out against the casino slash shopping area saying it would impact the health of people in the city negatively.

The promoters of the project are touting the creation of as many as ten thousand quality jobs which they contend would help the economy in a province that was once the manufacturing hub of Canada. MGM Resorts International announced a partnership with commercial real-estate giant Cadillac Fairview to potentially develop and operate “a destination-style, integrated resort complex,” on the grounds of the Canadian National Exhibition. One-stop shopping is critical to any mega-casino development, so that revenues are generated and maintained within the complex.

Opposition to a casino at Exhibition Place is mounting, with a major Liberty Village developer warning it will “immediately end” gentrification in the area and the head of Toronto’s annual exhibition vowing to mobilize “CNE nation” to stop the proposal. First Capital Realty, the national shopping centre company that is headquartered in Liberty Village and helped spur its development, has sent a letter to the city manager to voice its “strong opposition” to a casino proposed for nearby Exhibition Place. Meanwhile the MGM proposal is dangling the proverbial carrot of job creation and invested money in the face of local officials who are desperate to get the ball rolling. The negative effects of casino development are well documented in other cities and countries. Once the decision is made to build something costing $3 billion there is no turning back. First Capital Realty CEO Dori Segal said “Neither families nor anyone else wants to live next door to a casino!”

The Ontario Lottery Corporation is planning on rolling out online gambling shortly something that many suggest is a more practical way to offer gambling to punters in the province.

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