The Plan For Decades Has Clearly Included Casinos, Which Changes Everything For Real NEO

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sun, 07/19/2009 - 04:49.

In observing what has been planned for major infrastructure and private developments and strategic investment initiatives in the Greater Cleveland Area, with a focus on high dollar, high roller plans for downtown Cleveland and especially the lake and river fronts, when there are no current economic indicators projecting high income growth in Cleveland or the region, my only conclusion is that the "smart money" has been riding for a long time on the easy money of driving casino gambling downtown, in a big way, in the near future.

If Cleveland is shovel-ready for anything, it is for gambling... Forest City could Harrah Higbees, and Tower City, by Christmas - the Arcade could be lined with slots overnight.

In fact, we are well positioned to be the next Atlantic City, with as uninspiring results.

Knowing real estate development is a game played over decades, we now see before us Las Cleveland sans the casinos, going through the first stages of Disneyfication, and building the foundations for our Strip. Now, over the next five to ten years, add casinos. That, I believe, is the plan.

Assume every major player in town will get one - Forest City, Wolstein, Jacobs (family), Maron, K&D (if not indicted), etc... 6-10 depending on how many families flex their muscles... will an African American or Indian (of any kind) family, tribe or coalition step up?!?! Arabs... Chinese?

Where the casinos are built will change the economics, environment and culture of everything within 50 miles. Near casinos will be new gold-rushes of opportunity unimaginable pre-gambling. Suddenly, developments of 100s of million-dollar apartments will be viable, on the river and lakefront. Suddenly, the Flats is a goldmine. Suddenly, the Avenue District has an anchor, and all the property owners in the area see their value skyrocket.

Suddenly, prostitutes and dealers will be anchors of the real NEO middleclass.

Seeing how Strickland is saving the state of Ohio by legalizing slot machine gambling, and we have a lottery, horse racing, bingo, and Jacobs has had gambling in the Flats for years, casinos have been designed into our planning here in NEO, at the highest level, with intent, for decades. It is safe to say many leaders around Ohio have hidden their true support of gambling to position public perception and control the issue until timing has been right, which is now, in this economic downturn.

Rethink all your perspectives on everything about Real NEO with the assumption there will be a major casino and slot machine gambling presence, and all that comes with that here, as fast as the developers may pour the concrete. This changes everything.