By Matt Blanchard
Foxwoods casino representatives are expected to go before the Philadelphia City Planning Commission on Tuesday, July 17 starting at 1 p.m.
The meeting will be held at the Central Library’s Montgomery Auditorium at 1901 Vine Street in order to accomodate the large crowd likely to turn out for this controversial project.
Foxwoods, best known for their mega-casino in Connecticut, proposes a 3.7 million-square-foot facility along the river at Columbus Boulevard between Reed and Tasker Streets. The first phase includes 3,000 slot machines. Later phases will add shops, restaurants, entertainment venues, a parking garage, a public riverfront walkway and possibly two condominium and hotel towers, for a total estimated cost of $986 million.
Civic associations and City Council members alike have expressed skepticism that already busy Columbus Boulevard can handle thousands of additional cars drawn by the casino. Foxwoods has countered by offering to pay for improvements they say will leave traffic in the area flowing better than it does today.
The other proposed casino, Sugarhouse, was reviewed on May 22, also inside the Central Library, and won the commission’s approval. The commission gave only 24 hours notice of that meeting. This time, they’ve given nearly two weeks.
The Planning Commission and Foxwoods are also making large format drawings that are part of this plan available for public viewing. These drawings are technical in nature, and contain site layout information, engineering, zoning, and other technical data.
These drawings will not be posted on the Planning Commission website. They will be available for viewing at the Philadelphia City Planning Commission during regular business hours, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. beginning Friday.