The cty councilman representing the district is pleased with the state’s decision to revoke the license for the proposed Foxwoods Casino in South Philadelphia. Councilman Frank DiCicco said the Columbus Boulevard and Reed Street location Foxwoods selected was never a good site for a major casino. He said neighborhood opposition stalled the project enough to kill it.
“By slowing the process down, we got lucky, in the sense in the economy also had a downturn,” DiCicco said. “Had we not been able to slow it down or pursued all the actions that we did by way of city council and other lawsuits, the timing may have been totally different. We got a little bit lucky, there is no question about it, but the strategy of slowing it down worked in our favor.”
DiCicco said he’s not sure where the city’s second casino finally will be built. He said he favors the idea of using the rusting and historic SS United States as part of a riverfront casino, as long as neighbors support the location.
In the meantime, the city of Philadelphia will have to deal with an $11 million a year budget gap because the casino. Mayor Michael Nutter said the money was expected beginning in 2014.”In terms of our five-year plan, in fiscal years ’13, ’14 and ’15, there is an impact, obviously we’re currently in fiscal year ’11 so there isn’t a near-term impact,” he said. “But if that entity, or some other entity, isn’t up and running by that point and time we will have to make adjustments.”Like DiCicco, the mayor said he likes the possibility of the SS United States to house a casino. But, he said, that will require a developer who has the money to build a facility and state approval of such a plan.