I-91 upgrade seen affecting western Mass. casino

Apr 1, 2013

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A planned overhaul of an elevated section of Interstate 91 in Springfield Massachusetts is raising questions about access to two proposed downtown casinos.

MGM is planning an estimated $800 million downtown casino that would front the highway. Penn National Gaming, which is planning an $807 million casino, estimates that 40 percent of its traffic would come from the elevated section of I- 91.

The Republican reports that Stephen P. Crosby, chairman of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission said traffic plans will be a major factor when awarding licenses.

Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno said upgrading I-91 always comes into discussions because he wants to make sure smooth transportation continues for businesses and a potential casino. He said he does not believe the highway work would affect attendance or revenue from a casino.

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