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Steve Wynn Tries to Woo Philadelphia With His Casino Plan

Steve Wynn wants the Foxwoods Philadelphia casino. He's shown that by saying it in the media, talking up his brand and by presenting plans to the public and city officials three weeks early - all while the media was there to take photos. Unfortunately for Wynn, it's been the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board that has been putting the brakes on his plan, so it's up to him to win the hearts and minds of local officials and residents who may be able to change the minds of the state board faster than he can. From the Inquirer:

Regulators had ordered Wynn to submit design plans for the casino by April 26, with a public hearing on both the finances and architectural renderings scheduled for April 29.

"I've been working on it and thought: Why waste time?" he said. He said Wynn Resorts, the publicly traded Las Vegas gaming company he founded and heads as chairman, must get approval from state regulators to take control of the Foxwoods project. . . . But time is running out. . . . "I thought it was appropriate to also show the mayor what we were thinking," said Wynn, who was accompanied by his girlfriend, Andrea Hissom, and the project's builder, Dan Keating, chairman of Keating Group. . . . "As for Steve Wynn, the deal is done," he said.

When a local CBS affiliate interviewed residents in the nearby Pennsport neighborhood who reacted negatively to the project, most seemed resigned to the project but somehow thankful Wynn was attached to it.
"I guess that [Steve Wynn] is the lesser of all the evils," said Ian O'Shea, who also was taking his daughter to play at the new park. "Casinos tend to bring a bad element, and I'm raising a family. I guess we'll just have to wait and see."
Wynn brought in color renderings, passed them along to the press and highlighted that his theme will be subdued rather than neon-bright Las Vegas Strip-styled chic. The whole casino, with a Tuscan villa vibe, looks more like an Italian restaurant or suburban Marriott than a casino. Interestingly, although Wynn is courting public opinion, he and Foxwoods are requesting that conditions of the deal not be made public.
In a motion filed Thursday with the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, the original investor group - Philadelphia Entertainment and Development Partners (PEDP) - said it anticipated entering into a purchase agreement with Wynn/PEDP L.P., a newly formed affiliate of the Nevada gaming company run by Steve Wynn.

That agreement contains "confidential, proprietary information, as well as trade secrets related to the business activities and financial affairs of Wynn/PEDP," according to the motion.

Perhaps the jolly gladhanding with the mayor was just another attempt to disarm the public from the motion made last week.

Photo: Wynn Resorts
Related Stories:
Jackpot! Steve Wynn Plans a Casino for Philadelphia
No Dice: Officials Put Steve Wynn's Philadelphia Casino on Hold

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