Sunday, March 4, 2012

Some More SouthCoast

Some interesting pieces to day in the S-t.  There is the "Our View" the Spillane article and the news article related to casino and jobs, and casino and traffic.  Unless something radically changes in the thought process, it appears pretty clear that New Bedford isn't getting the casino.  

Locating a gambling project in Taunton will not be the end of the world for those of us here on the coast in the SouthCoast.  As noted in the opinion piece, such a location would be close enough to be beneficial for those in need of employment.  Of course if gas hits $5.00 per gallon, the travel is still going to eat into people's take home pay.

Travel is a concept that at least the news folks seem to be taking into account over such a project.  The highway interchange for Rtes. 24 and 140 is, as amply pointed out by the S-T a mess.  If you have ever had the pleasure of traveling to Boston on a morning when there has been an accident at or near the junction of these two roads, you can realize the potential for gridlock.  

But gridlock is a concept our state leaders should be well acquainted with on the whole casino issue.  I mean what other reason to explain the decades it took to come to the conclusion that legalized casino gambling is now perfectly all right in the Commonwealth.

Actually, if one thinks about it, it is hard not to wonder if the fact the voters approving the ballot question which essentially banned dog racing did more to make casino gambling possible in this state than anything else.  It seems every serious proposal for casinos ended up stalled over the insistence by some over allowing slots into racetracks.  

No more racetracks, at least for dog races, no more need to allow slot machines at the tracks.  Before the worry seemed to be casinos would put the tracks out of business without slot machines for the tracks.   Now, well the problem simply doesn't exist, does it.

Makes one have to wonder.  I realize it is simply conjecture, but still ....

Casinos were inevitable.  Sad part about all of it is the decision to allow them comes at a time when it is a developers market as far as getting them built, licensed and operated.  There is all ready strong competition in the New England area, and more to come it seems.  Ten years ago the goose probably could have been laying a 24kt. golden egg.  Today, we will be lucky if that egg is 14kt.  But hey, gold is at an all time high, right?

The biggest plus to New Bedford, and therefore the entire SouthCoast, is the fact that since the casino will most probably not be built in NB, there now are prime pieces of land that will re-enter the market for use.  

While it may not seem like it at times, there really is a tremendous amount of creative, innovative thinking in our area.  Hopefully those who possess it can get together and find a use for prime land that will create jobs, improve neighborhoods and work as an economic engine for developing something other than a strictly entertainment based industry (what type of industry would you call a casino?).

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