Kraft and Wynn Should Not Place a Casino in Foxboro, MA

A political cartoon epitomizes the Foxboro casino debate. (Drawn by Ashley Waldron)

Robert Kraft and Steve Wynn are developing a plan to team up in order to build a resort-style casino in Foxboro, Massachusetts across the street from Gillette Stadium. Although owning a casino is illegal for NFL team owners, Kraft would not actually have any ownership of the casino. He would simply rent the land where the casino would be built to Wynn. However, the casino does not win the support of residents who live near the stadium and the plot of land where Wynn hopes to build his casino. Residents near Gillette Stadium and Patriot’s Place have become accustomed to occasional traffic on game days and days in the summer when concerts take place. However, with the proposal of a casino across the street from the stadium, residents’ are concerned that Route 1 will become a place of constant traffic and congestion. Along with this overcrowding, residents are also worried that the crime rate will drastically increase.

Despite the concerns of the residents, advocates of the casino are proposing that the jobs created by the casino would be worth the problems that would come out of the casino. While placing a casino in Foxboro would create more jobs, the quality of the jobs would be low, making an average of $15,000 to $25,000 per year. Kraft and Wynn have also said that the construction of the resort-style casino would create around 10,000 jobs. However, both The Hoover Dam and The Big Dig only produced about half of that number. So, Kraft and Wynn are claiming that building a hotel and casino will create as many jobs as the construction of The Hoover Dam and Big Dig combined. It would probably be safe to say that creating so many jobs through the construction of a casino is not possible. Although any jobs with the current economy creates progress, a casino is not the way to do this. The negative effects of a casino would far outweigh the positive ones created by employment.

For example, the crime rate in Foxboro and surrounding towns would sky rocket. In Ledyard, Connecticut, a town with a population similar to that of Foxboro, the crime rate increased by 300% when a Foxwoods Casino was built in the town. Ledyard’s DWI and DUI rates also became the highest in Connecticut. People who live near the land where Wynn wants to build the casino fear that the same will happen in Foxboro if the casino is approved.

Another concern for the residents is how the casino would affect traffic. Foxwoods casino generates around 55,000 visitors per day–around the same amount of people that would be arriving in Foxboro for a Patriots game. The traffic is inconvenient to residents living anywhere near Foxboro, and it could leave local businesses to a disadvantage as Route 1 would be inaccessible.

The casino is also causing a huge division within the town. At the Board of Selectmen meeting on December 13, 2011, members of the board not only contributed their views on the matter, but also how they think the casino will affect Foxboro’s sense of community. Town clerk Mark S. Sullivan  said “I wish this proposal never came to us.” Members of the audience were applauding and booing depending on how their own opinions were being represented. The board advisor stated that the behavior of the crowd and the town is an indication that the casino will result in a “sense of community fractured, if not destroyed.”  Acts of vandalism have even been reported, with anti-casino signs being set on fire on two different properties and one sign being stolen. The selectmen want Foxboro to be a place where community is valued, but the possibility of a casino is making this impossible.

The pros and cons of the casino on the pay by phone bill casino reviews are being argued, the controversy in the town can be seen by anyone. The well-fare of the community is in jeopardy, and the town does not want a business endeavor to overshadow the well being of the town and its citizens.