When Bad Ideas Fly—II
Slot players are hardly likely to stop off at Super Fresh to do a little food shopping, pick up building supplies at Lowe’s and The Home Depot, or browse for sailing books and charts at the Pilot House. They come to gamble. Period.
Regular customers of these 60 stores will go elsewhere rather than spend hours in a car.
With no customers, the stores will close. The 950 new jobs at Foxwoods will be offset by more than a thousand jobs lost at the shuttered businesses.
The cost of lost shopping convenience to many thousands of South Philly residents (myself included): Priceless.
Gamblers with cash in their pockets—and horny for action—will not sit still in stalled traffic for hours. Instead, they will tool along I-95—thirty minutes north to the slots at Philadelphia Park or forty minutes south to Delaware Park. These racetracks have easy access and plenty of free parking.
With gamblers opting for other venues, Foxwoods will go out of business. This entire once-thriving area of South Philadelphia will become a dead zone.
It’ll be presided over by the perfect symbol of government-sponsored corporate stupidity—the fastest ocean liner in the world—the S.S. United States, a giant red, white and black rusted carcass moored across the street from what was once the grand shopping and eating experience of IKEA.
Three miles north of Foxwoods, on Delaware Avenue, the SugarHouse casino complex will rise, replicating the disastrous Foxwoods scenario.
The only sick satisfaction will come from knowing that the greedy goofball investors will take a half-billion dollar bath.