Steve Wynn Fights For Philly Casino Project
Philly.com reports on Wynn's appearance before the board where he tried to convince them that he had the money and ability to complete the $600 million casino in South Philadelphia. What he mostly provided where pretty words rather than concrete plans and so the board has decided that Wynn must provide detailed financing information, architectural drawings and a construction timetable within the next two months. On April 29 the board will take another look at the proposal. Meanwhile the board continues to fine the Foxwoods group $2,000 a day until a successful project plan has been agreed upon. Local sentiment on the project is mixed, some hope the project will bring jobs to the region while others are protesting the idea of having a casino in the area.
The Philly.com article points out that when the project won one of two slots licenses for Philadelphia in 2006, the Mashantucket Pequot tribe, which runs Foxwoods, had a 30 percent stake. The other 70 percent was held by 12 investors that also included family charities for Center City developer Ron Rubin, New Jersey sports-team owner Lewis Katz, and Comcast-Spectacor chairman Ed Snider. In Wynn's new deal the charities would get just 21 percent of the casino's profit. But the Foxwoods group believes the Wynn deal is the best possible solution to save the project. If the gaming board does not approve him and extend the deadline for opening the casino to December 2012 and the city does not issue a building permit then the deal is off.
Wynn is know for his attractive projects and he has promised that the Pennsylvania casino would have a portico-like entrance rising 12 feet above street level. The casino floor would have a central atrium, with slots and table games on one level and a banquet hall, meeting rooms, and a nightclub on a second level. He is clearly willing to throw both his considerable fortune and his ambition behind the project and the one thing that the gaming board can probably rely on is that Wynn knows how to build an attractive property.