Vancouver casino proposed again for BC Place
Project would include relocated Edgwater casino, hotels, conference centre
Paragon Development Ltd. has laid out its plans for a new $535 million casino next to BC Place Stadium, a project being billed as a "world class urban resort."
Paragon and its partners held a news conference in Vancouver this morning to outline the plan.
There was a firestorm of protest the last time Paragon tried to put a new casino next to the stadium, and Paragon president Scott Menke says the company got the message.
“We needed to do that because we needed to get it right,” he said. “The concept that we are here to share with you today meets all those goals. The urban resort concept is very different than the casino resorts that many people think of, especially the ones in Las Vegas.”
This 675,000-square-foot development would feature two hotels, a conference centre, restaurants, retail outlets and a new home for the existing Edgewater casino, which features 600 slot machines and 75 gaming tables.
Opponents speak out
Much of the opposition to the last proposal centred around plans to expand the casino to as many as 1,500 slot machines and 150 gaming tables.
"If there is any hint of expansion of gambling either now or in the future I am voting against it," said Vancouver Counc. Kerry Jang. "Under our watch, we said no expansion of gambling. This is not a done deal."
On Tuesday, Sandy Garossino, spokeswoman for anti-casino group Vancouver Not Vegas, said she was suspicious of the new proposal.
"There must be a plan at some point in the future, if not today, at some point... to shoe-horn the gaming tables and slot machines we rejected so soundly," she said.
Paragon and PavCo, which owns the land, have already signed a development agreement.
The new plan still needs approval from the city but the developers are hoping the urban resort will be open for business in 2016.