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Caesars, MGM Announce Preferred TO Casino Locations

Published: September 27, 2012 2:16 pm ET

Last Comment: October 8, 2012 8:45 am ET | 14 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

Reports which have surfaced this week have clarified the locations that potential casino operators MGM Resorts International and Caesars Entertainment favour if they eventually get the go-ahead to erect casino complexes in the heart of Toronto.

An article by the Toronto Star has explained that MGM's preferred location is Exhibition Place, which has already drawn criticism.

Although MGM's senior VP of public affairs, Alan Feldman, believes that his company would only use up "maybe 10 or 20 per cent of Exhibition Place’s 200 acres," Canadian National Exhibition President Brian Ashton begged to differ. “When you look at the layout of space and heritage buildings, taking 20 to 40 acres of usable space and making it private would leave little public waterfront property for events like the CNE, other festivals, and public use,” he said, adding, “it’s like giving away the crown jewels and trying to keep the Queen.”

An article by the National Post has explained that Caesars preferred location is none other than Front St., right smack-dab in the middle of what is one of the most congested urban areas on the continent.

“That’s our preference because of the way the resort would integrate with the rest of downtown and the other local businesses,” said Jan Jones, executive vice president of communications and government relations for Caesars.

Jones also went on the record as saying that Caesars would utilize a "collaborative" approach in order to not "keep people from going to the shows and entertainment that (currently) exists.”

In the wake of the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.'s controversial gaming modernization announcement, local businesses in the direct vicinity of where it is suspected that the OLG wants to introduce casino complexes have been up in arms. The businesses have made it clear that they see the OLG plans as being a move which will decimate their established businesses.

At least on the surface, all of the talk from Caesars, MGM and the OLG in regard to a downtown Toronto casino is a classic case of putting the cart before the horse, as the process of whether or not to the City of Toronto will sign off on such a controversial move is still apparently taking place.

(With files from the National Post and the Toronto Star)

October 8, 2012 - 8:45 amI am not a legal expert to

Paulo Watson SAID...

I am not a legal expert to say my opinion, but I don't like to encourage casinos.
Regards,

September 29, 2012 - 7:10 pmWhy don't they just make the

Why don't they just make the existing casino's at the racetracks larger, keeping the present employees and there would be a need for more people / jobs. thanks leo samarillo

September 29, 2012 - 8:05 amDon't let your city council

Don't let your city council proceed on any casino plans without a referendum. Get to your city councillor and mpp NOW.

September 28, 2012 - 1:38 pm@ Paul Keith. We do not live

Will Yamakva SAID...

@ Paul Keith.

We do not live in communist country, but we do live in a country where we elect a party where only 1/3 of the votes can win an election. This is not a "majority rules" scenerio.

Mr Keith, you are asking people to listen to the people, but has the horse racing industry listened to us racing fans? Has the industry made new fans that would back your side? You would like the government and the OLG to listen up, but racing fans, and the people that you should be screaming to, the citizens of the province, are not listening to as well.

@ raymond Nicolas..

"no one bothers to listen to what the horsemen & agriculture want."

And the horseman and agriculture people have not listened to the racing fans.

September 28, 2012 - 12:41 pmAs a local business man, I

Alex Garcia SAID...

As a local business man, I can already testify to offers being placed to lease specific properties. Some companies are getting into ridiculous bidding wars without any actual "skin-in-the-game" and local property owners are acting like they have money trees.

I have spoken to council members and it has brought private planning and construction in the area to a halt. As in Zero! No one is moving forward on any developments. The likelihood of a Casino actually being in the downtown core is very slim, so millions are already being lost due to this.

Would love to see a joint effort by members of the horse breeding and racing community and concerned downtown businesses.

September 28, 2012 - 12:34 pmJust want to say hi and voice

Alex Garcia SAID...

Just want to say hi and voice my support. I am in no way associated with racing, horses or betting. However, I have been following the proposed Casino since January. I am a local Toronto business man that was saw a recent plan curtailed by the proposal.

My question would be, what steps have members of your community taken to raise awareness both with council and the public? Is there a group that would be willing to march in protest against the Casino? I am looking to organize community members in the area and would love to see a joint effort.

September 28, 2012 - 5:40 amGuess who owns the property

Tom Kelly SAID...

Guess who owns the property on the south side of FRONT ST. Between University and Simcoe? Could his name start with T? Money talks and the rest of us walk!

September 27, 2012 - 7:01 pmMmm, guess Mr Godfrey's next

ron francis SAID...

Mmm, guess Mr Godfrey's next executive position will be with MGM or Cesar's. Mr McGinty may get a job as well. Talk about a "deal with the devil". Forget about harness racing and SAR, the opposition parties should be jumping all over this.

September 27, 2012 - 6:31 pmThey won't listen to the

They won't listen to the people until they are voted out of power and it seems the people of Toronto love the Liberals because they are the only ones voting for them. Why do you think they ignore rural Ontario? It's because rural Ontario doesn't vote Liberal.

September 27, 2012 - 4:28 pmWhat a display of arrogance

chris bush SAID...

What a display of arrogance on the part of the OLG and casinos. Almost like its a forgone conclusion they will prevail even though its clear nobody is in favor of the idea. Question now is how will they 'make' it happen or how will Mcguinty make it happen for them?

September 27, 2012 - 3:09 pmMy goodness..this little

My goodness..this little story is going to light up the comments board.I don't live in Toronto and I have nothing against Americans.In fact,my mother was born and raised in the U.S. so I guess I have American blood in me.BUT if these American casino builders and Mr Godfrey's OLGC think Exhibition Place or any other downtown location is a 'logical' spot for a casino they had better go back to school and enrol in urban planning 101.In all this craziness created by the government we hear stupid idea followed closely by another stupid idea,the BIGGEST one being ending the SAR program.
It is high time for CTV or the CBC or a major newspaper to put their investigative journalists to work and find out what back room deals have been made and whose pockets are being lined.AND it is time for Andrea Horvath and Tim Hudak to join forces and get this government out of town.

September 27, 2012 - 3:06 pmWHO GIVES A DAMN WHAT CEASARS

WHO GIVES A DAMN WHAT CEASARS & MGM WANT ????????????
no one bothers to listen to what the horsemen & agriculture want.
I would tell ANY American operator to take a flying leap...and when they do take
McGuinty & Duncan with them....along with Paul Godfrey and any other Lying Liberal that can't see what a pile of crap has been created by Liberals and their economic game. Liberals caused this problem and we Ontarians have paid once already for their stupidity and now we have to pay again.I really resent being sold out to American Casino operators.

September 27, 2012 - 2:41 pmIF I owned a restaruant in

Georg Leber SAID...

IF I owned a restaruant in Downtown Toronto (anywhere) I would protest like hell.
Everytime I go to a casino and I plan to eat, I eat at the Casino because they give me comps to the restaurant. It's a no brainer, the businesses downtown who pay huge rents would scream.

Of course I am sure as I breathe that Godfrey will not give up his quest. It really stinks on ice now. He better quit before he gets accused of insider trading.

When you break it down, not only are they arrogant enough to think that they will get these casinos, they even have their spots picked out. Maybe the NDP and the PC's can ask the Speaker of the house to request documents and emails pertaining to discussions already taking place. Of course in light of what's happening in the parliament right now, the Liberals will submit 36,000 documents like they did on the moving of the gas plants with every other document blank.

Georg Leber-ICR Racing

September 27, 2012 - 2:33 pmWhen are these fools running

Paul Keith SAID...

When are these fools running the OLG as well as the Liberal government going to wake up and realize that we don't live in a communist country, and listen to the people?


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