OLG Changes Toronto Casino Strategy

When it comes to building a new casino in Toronto, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation has been quite forceful and direct in attempting to convince politicians that the downtown core is the ideal location for the new gambling venue. Now, after a less-than-favourable response, the OLG s changing its tune, letting the details speak for themselves.

With three Las Vegas-based gambling giants interested in the new gambling complex, it is obvious that the new OLG will attract an impressive tourist base. Wynn, MGM and Las Vegas Sands are working hard to obtain a monopoly on the construction and development of the new casino complex. Toronto presents a fresh market for these gambling giants, especially as Las Vegas profits wane and competition thrives in other states.

Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan envisions a ‘golden mile’ gambling complex, situated on or near the Toronto Waterfront. OLG Chair Paul Godfrey sees it as an opportunity to build a casino-resort in the same location. Either way, the new Toronto casino will be an all-inclusive location, complete with restaurants, shops and entertainment complexes.

This multi-functional approach is what has many local businesses worried. Rather than being excited about the prospect of introducing new tourists to the area, business owners are worried that the complex would present unnecessary competition with local restaurants, nightlife and shopping. Other casino locations in Ontario, such as Windsor, Niagara Falls and Orillia are also wary, as the new casino complex would take business away from them.

While city staff compile a report on the pros and cons of bringing a casino to Toronto, the OLG seems as though it will be taking a relaxed approach to convincing the general public to support the project. The report will certainly act as proof enough of whether or not a casino is suitable for Toronto.


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