EAST WINDSOR, Conn. (WWLP) – The two tribes that want to build a casino in Connecticut to compete with MGM Springfield have narrowed down the proposed locations.
MGM Springfield will be the only casino in the area once it opens in 2018, but that might not last for long. The Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes announced on Friday the new casino would be built in East Windsor or Windsor Locks.
Both locations the Connecticut tribes have proposed are less than 20 miles from Springfield and are about a 23 minute drive away from downtown Springfield.
The tribes were originally considering five proposed locations for a third casino in Connecticut. The tribes initially wanted to pick a casino site by December 2015, and open before MGM Springfield does in September 2018.
They announced on Friday that Hartford, East Hartford, and South Windsor are no longer being considered. The Mashantucket Pequot Tribe said they chose East Windsor and Windsor Locks, because they believe they would be their best chance to compete with MGM Springfield, and keep jobs and revenue in Connecticut.
MGM’s executive vice president called the entire process a sham, and in the past, has said they’re not worried about competition in Connecticut.
MGM, however, has tried to stop Connecticut from allowing the tribes to build a third casino. MGM is arguing that by allowing the tribes to exclusively negotiate a deal for a third casino on non-tribal land, it would create a monopoly, allowing the tribes exclusive rights to pursue a third casino. They’re still waiting for the U.S. court of appeals to make a decision.