Non-Indian casino in Massachusetts hits construction milestone

Construction continues at the MGM Resorts International gaming facility in Springfield, Massachusetts. Photo: MGM Springfield

A non-Indian casino in Massachusetts is still more than a year away from opening but it's reached a milestone in construction.

MGM Resorts International is holding a topping-off ceremony on Wednesday at its $950 million commercial casino in Springfield. The facility, located in the western part of the state, is due to open in late 2018.

The development has the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe in neighboring Connecticut worried about job and revenue losses at their facilities. They have joined forces and are proposing to open a new casino not far from the state line.

The New England Casino Race: Tribal and commercial gaming facilities in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island

The tribes are pursuing the facility outside of the framework of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and they need approval from the state Legislature to proceed. Despite the hurdles, they believe they can convert an old movie theater in East Windsor into a casino before MGM debuts its facility. The two sites are only about 13 miles apart.

Read More on the Story:
MGM marks milestone in planned Massachusetts casino (AP 3/28)

Some Opinions:
David Collins: Casino moves: Can the tribes outmaneuver MGM? (The New London Day 3/28)
Dan Haar: An Option That Might Solve Connecticut's Casino Stalemate (The Hartford Courant 3/23)

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