A Casino in Lynn?

May 23, 2012
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Two local businesspeople are reaching out to Steve Wynn, the iconic casino developer and one of the world’s richest men to consider coming to Lynn.

On its face, the reach out by Patricia Keefe and David Zeller, should be complimented for its savvy. Lynn could use more positive energy like theirs. Even their logo, “Wynn in Lynn,” should get an award from the local Chamber of Commerce for its classic play on words.

That being said, bringing a casino to Lynn, to the 300 acres or so available for development along the waterfront, is an enormous effort and the Suffolk Downs group in Revere/East Boston has already put in about 6 years of planning for their effort to gain a casino license.

Locating a casino off the Lynnway would require dramatic traffic mitigation efforts and might even make necessary the Blue Line hook-up Lynn city planners and politicians have been trying to gain for decades.

It would also require residents of Lynn to pass a referendum showing that the residents of this city want a casino. This is something that might be easier said than done when a citywide vote is tallied.

There are many who would oppose the casino on moral grounds. Many more would object to the added traffic. Still others would object to the beliefs, whether real or imagined, that casinos bring crime and lower home values.

We believe a $1 billion development on the underutilized Lynn waterfront would be a spectacular boost.

The jobs such a development would create would be a certain plus, so too would the employment of tradesmen and women out of work for so many years as a result of the recession.

Such an investment of capital off the Lynnway would spawn other investment and compliment major investment already there.

However, Mr. Wynn was turned off by his experience in Foxboro. We don’t pretend to know what he is thinking but you can bet he will think very carefully about attempting a foray into the complexities of developing a casino in Massachusetts.

A casino in Lynn or anywhere is not perceived as panacea.

But one thing is for certain, a casino here would bring a dramatic boost to the local economy.

We applaud the efforts of Keefe and Zeller.

They come a bit late into the game but as the old saying goes: better late than never.

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