Expanding its ability to generate increased revenues while at the same time improving the city’s resources on lower Broadway are among the imperatives for Encore Boston Harbor Casino and Hotel as time moves forward.
Wynn Resorts invested slightly more than $2 billion on lower Broadway just to open in 2019.
This was arguably one of the largest infusions of capital into a smaller city in Massachusetts development history.
The 33 acre parcel of land Encore built on, as most Everett residents will likely recall, remediated what had been one of the most polluted sites in America.
Last year and into this year, Encore is generating huge numbers both as a taxpayer and as an employer and frankly, as a good neighbor in the city of Everett.
It is on an economic juggernaut to cement itself here as the most significant single investment in Everett by an outside corporation. The expansions it is planning on lower Broadway are extraordinary.
Lower Broadway has become Encore’s, and rightfully so.
This doesn’t mean Encore should be allowed to do exactly as it pleases whenever it asks.
To that end, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission wanted to hear out Everett residents and stakeholders at a public meeting at city hall.
Hearing out those who care enough to comment in public is a proper way to measure support for Encore’s further investment intentions.
Those who refuse to speak out are, inevitably, not really heard – and rightfully so, again.
We believe the bottom line with Encore on lower Broadway is that Wynn Resorts and investments entities are doing the right thing in a big way.
The company is creating more jobs, improving more formerly polluted land, and building a future that was once quite unimaginable for the residents of this city.
There are plans presently real or imagined for a possible soccer stadium near to the shore of the Mystic River dominated for the past 100 years by energy generating plants.
Those relics from another time are about to disappear, and well they should.
A soccer stadium is a vast improvement over energy generating plants – besides – now that the plants are unused, there is the need to produce tax generating real estate projects that contributes to the city’s tax base and to its financial well-being.
The auditorium that is planned is another positive investment for Encore and for the city. Again, the reuse of formerly polluted land for entertainment purposes is like a miracle in many respects.
The planned parking garage and pedestrian walkway over Broadway will reduce traffic on what is rapidly becoming one of the most important commercial arteries in New England.
And there are two other enormous possibilities for redevelopment apparently being eyed by Encore/Wynn – the MBTA facility that abuts the casino and the Honda dealership with major frontage on Broadway.
We favor the expansion of Encore on lower Broadway.
Wynn Resorts has shown itself to be a responsible, heads up partner with the city to remake the place in a quarter of the city that was polluted and as dead as a doornail for decades.
Not everyone feels this way about Encore.
Some remain opposed to gambling, and with good reason. Many lives are ruined by gambling addiction.
Some believe there is too much development, too much traffic and too much density.
There are many Everett residents who never go near Encore or lower Broadway. For them, the casino isn’t part of their lives or of their city.
What is going on there is a bit like Assembly Square in Somerville – a new city within a city that gets in no one’s way.
We believe a balance has been struck by Encore and Wynn on lower Broadway.
The city is benefitting from the marriage.
As long as those benefits outweigh the liabilities, the development show on lower Broadway must be allowed to go on and on.