Study Shows Positive Outcome for St. Tammany Casino in Louisiana
A potential casino in St. Tammany, Louisiana would have a positive impact according to details of a recent economic study.
A casino project is currently under consideration in Slidell, Louisiana, with supporters and opponents both weighing in on what they think should occur. The casino resort plans place the venue in St. Tammany and the project would cost $329 million. An economic study was recently conducted on the venue, and it showed that the region would be moderately impacted in a positive manner by the new business.
The Casino Review
The St. Tammany Corporation commissioned the review, and it was completed to determine the potential impact such a venue would create in the parish. Would Slidell be negatively or positively impacted? The company works hard to help local businesses with economic developments and hired Convergence Strategy Group to complete the study.
The analysts were able to determine that the project, titled Camellia Bay Resort, would not be a negative element in Slidell or St. Tammany. The study is 45 pages long and in its summary, the analysts said that they expect the casino to have a moderately positive to negligible impact on the businesses in the area.
Peninsula Pacific Entertainment (P2E) wants to see voters of the parish vote to approve its Bossier City license to move to Slidell. The license was used to operate the DiamondJacks casino. It moved, it would work for the Camella Bay venue, which will be located on the Lakeshore Marina.
One of the major concerns surrounding the project involving local residents of the Lakeshore Marina is the fact that their property value might be affected. Over the years, studies have shown that when a casino comes into an area, the value of local properties goes down. However, Convergence says this is not what will happen.
According to the casino report, studies that showed property value declines date back to the 1990s. The studies looked at data from early communities where casinos were constructed such as in riverboats, Atlantic City homes, and Nevada properties.
The group points out recent casino additions in areas like Massachusetts to prove their point. When MGM Resorts built its Springfield casino, it was predicted that property values would decrease by almost 5%. In reality, the casino actually boosted values and provide over 21% more in value.
Convergence says that property values could increase with the completion of the new casino build along with job improvement. The study points out that for some locals, living near the gaming resort will create job opportunities. Living near the workplace cuts down on commute time and can increase income earnings.
The casino would need close to 1,000 full time employees to function. The company has stated that average pay with salary and benefits would reach around $45,000.
The report also pointed out the potential flaws of the casino build. For some, living near the casino would be unappealing due to views being blocked, traffic, or lighting issues. From a residential real estate view, the pros and cons seem to balance each other.
As a way to increase its potential for approval, the casino operator has agreed to donate $5 million to help create the ring levee the region needs to stay safe from the effects of hurricane weather. The ring levee will cost $9 million to build but P2E has committed to pay at least half the cost.
It will be interesting to see if the positive points of the study are enough to get voters to approve the plans in the future or if P2E will need to come up with another idea to see its license move to a new region of the state.