Prince George's Casino Developer To Be Named This Month
The state of Maryland will soon have a new casino that is expected to change the gaming industry, and the developer of that new casino is expected to be named by the time the new year begins. The state has narrowed the list of potential developers to three.
Over the past few months, three developers have made their pitches and shown their hands, hoping to secure the license to build a casino in Prince George's County. The casino is part of one of the most anticipated gaming expansions in the Northeast, and one that could affect casinos throughout the region for years to come.
MGM Resorts International, which owns casinos throughout the US, placed a bid they hope will land them the Prince George's casino. The MGM proposal would bring a casino to the Potomac River at National Harbor. The casino would be located off of I95, which makes it accessible to both Maryland residents, and travelers touring up the East Coast.
The MGM bid was the most lucrative of the three until Penn National revamped their bid to include an additional $320 million the company agreed to pump into the Maryland health and education systems. That brought the total bid of Penn National to over $1 billion. MGM's proposal was for a $925 million facility.
The third bid, placed by Greenwood Racing, is considered the long shot, with a $761 million proposal. The Greenwood group also upped their bid in recent weeks, adding a promise of $100 million to road improvements.
"While the MGM bid looks to be the obvious choice, Maryland regulators are strongly considering each of the other proposals," said analyst Harvey Franz. "No matter which proposal wins, Maryland will soon become one of the gaming giants in the region with the addition of this new casino."
Maryland is chasing both Pennsylvania and New Jersey in terms of gaming revenue. Atlantic City had been the premiere gaming destination on the East Coast until three years ago when Pennsylvania passed New Jersey as the top grossing casino industry in the East. Pennsylvania trails only Nevada in overall gaming revenue in the US.
Maryland is considered to have one of the best preventative programs for problem gambling and treatment. The state started gaining national notoriety for the programs, and its policies are being modeled throughout the country.