How Casino Laws May Affect Construction in the Boston Area

Boston Casino LawA major Boston casino construction project is currently underway, but conflicts surrounding the state’s 2011 casino law may stop the project before it can be completed.

Plainridge Racecourse, a harness-racing track in Plainville, Massachusetts, has moved ahead with construction on a $225 million expansion headed by Penn National Gaming. The new construction will create a slot machine parlor with as many as 1,250 gambling machines. The expanded casino is scheduled to open in the spring of 2015.

Yet the casino project remains in danger because of opposition to the 2011 law that approved Las-Vegas style casino gambling in Massachusetts. Opponents are trying to place a measure on the state’s November ballot to repeal the law.

Opponents argue that the state’s voters should have the right to decide whether or not this type of gambling should be allowed in Massachusetts. Both sides presented arguments to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on May 5, 2014.

If the state’s Supreme Judicial Court rules that the issue should be decided in a referendum on the November ballot, it’s possible the casino construction project could be halted, perhaps indefinitely, if voters move against it.

Those who disapprove of the casino argue that the state of Massachusetts is already experiencing an increase in construction and doesn’t need to rely on the gambling industry to add construction industry jobs. They also assert that once casinos are built in a community, other construction in the vicinity of the casino slows down or stops.

In contrast, supporters point to the very real addition of some 1,000 jobs in the area, due solely to the requirements of the Plainridge Racecourse expansion. They believe that the tangible evidence of new jobs will overcome voter objections to the casino.

In the Boston area, Construction Monitor serves as the premier provider of detailed building permit data and other important construction industry information. Contact us today for more information on the impact of Boston casino construction and how it will affect the industry in Boston and the surrounding communities.

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