John Rodriguez, candidate for mayor in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, recently said he is strongly against allowing a casino in the city’s downtown area. “There is no evidence to back up claims that a downtown casino will spur economic development or downtown renewal. In fact, the experience in other cities show that downtown casinos bring no economic benefit to an area, with the exception of the casino itself,” Rodriguez said.
He does not agree with supporters’ claims that a casino would attract tourists and residents to the central core of the city and help existing businesses there. “The fact is that patrons of casinos attend these facilities for no other purpose than to gamble. They do not frequent area restaurants, nor do they combine their casino visit with attending the theatre or other area attraction,” Rodriguez stated.
The candidate noted, however, he is not opposed to a casino located in another area of the city. Rodriguez said the current location of the Slots at Sudbury Downs should be considered if the Ontario Gaming and Lottery Corporation moves forward with plans to open a full casino in Greater Sudbury.