Benefits of the Wynn Development for the City of Everett - Carlo DeMaria

Benefits of the Wynn Development for the City of Everett

Since being approached by Wynn Resorts last November, our community has been discussing the idea of siting a resort-casino within the borders of our City.  After several public meetings and events, and through communication both online and through the press, most people have learned and are aware of the essentials. 

We’ve discussed at length that the resort would be located along Lower Broadway on the former Monsanto Chemical Site, that Everett would be the sole host community and benefit from a well negotiated Host Community Agreement that will yield millions of dollars each year in revenue to the City, and mitigation measures.   And while these details are crucial when considering such a development, there are also many other factors – some maybe less obvious – as to why this once in a lifetime development opportunity would be beneficial to our City.

Throughout the course of my administration, I have been working to guide the City in overcoming the effects of a recovering economy.  After 2008 when the housing market collapsed causing property values and household incomes to take a drastic hit, development across the country, Everett included, became stagnant.   However, throughout this difficult economic climate, my vision to build a bigger and better Everett has always remained strong. 

We have seen success with the addition of business and residential developments to our community, such as L.Knife and Sons, Cumar Marble, Tortilleria La Nina, and the Broadway Lofts. Through prudent fiscal management and a well thought out and executed Capital Improvement Plan we have completed projects such as the renovation of Everett Stadium and Glendale Park, retained the highest standard of public safety and City services, and repaired and maintained countless streets and sidewalks.  As a community we have come together and developed long-term plans for our City  most notably a Lower Broadway Master Plan, encompassing development and rejuvenation plans for a neglected and blighted section of our City.  All of these endeavors work toward the common goal of creating a successful, healthy, and beautiful city. 

By laying the groundwork through careful and exhaustive planning, a resort of this caliber and magnitude – developed by the most successful hotel developer in the world – fits right in with our vision for Everett. This resort would be the catalyst our City needs, . and not just in terms of dollars and cents.  Yes, the revenue would be of the likes Everett has never seen, and yes, that would assist  with our City’s finances both short and long term.  But it’s all the additional benefits that Everett would see that make it really worth the while. 

Since the departure of Monsanto, the property at Horizon Way has remained vacant and contaminated. The necessary environmental remediation is of such an intense scope, that most developers could not, or would not, take it on.  With the development of the Wynn Everett Resort, not only will the site be completely remediated, it will be transformed into a community waterfront site, usable and accessible for all Everett residents.  Imagine for a moment strolling the Mystic River along a Harbor walk that connects the DCR Park to Broadway, or utilizing a touch and go boat dock for recreational boat access.  These are goals we’ve envisioned and included in our City’s Municipal Harbor Plan, goals that can become a reality as a result of the Wynn Resort.

In fact, the entire area of Lower Broadway, a neighborhood we have been focusing on for the past few years, would see a revitalization from this project.   Since undertaking the lower Broadway Master Plan process in 2011,I have been meeting with residents and property owners from that neighborhood to formulate a solid, sustainable and feasible plan for renewal.  Following that process, we have formulated a comprehensive new vision that includes redevelopment ideas and strategies, to try and renew and rejuvenate this important neighborhood that serves as the gateway to our City.  The Wynn Everett Resort would complement this vision, and also assist in making it a reality.  As part of the scope of the project, Lower Broadway itself would be transformed.  It would be widened into a four-lane boulevard, complete with new paving and sidewalks, landscaping and ornamental lighting.  To help ease congestion and divert the industrial traffic, a Lower Broadway Truck Route would be established, sending trucks and commercial vehicles around the area via Bow Street.  With the increased attention to detail and betterment of the area, property and real estate in the area will be that much more attractive to other new developments, triggering a renewal and interest that will supplement and serve our overall Master Plan vision. For the first time, Everett will have its gateway into the City of Boston, highlighting our growth, our vision, our progress and our potential.

Other benefits include the vast improvements to traffic and transportation.  The development will address not only the immediate area of Lower Broadway, but also areas such as Route 16, Santilli Highway and Circle, Sweetser Circle, and the Connolly Rotary. These are long needed improvements and those that we as a city and state have lacked the resources to accomplish – with mitigation measures to be taken by Wynn, these improvements will become a reality.  Studies have been conducted, and will continue, in order to ease the flow of traffic and make transportation through these areas as efficient as possible.  There will also be increased public transportation access that would come to our City as a result of the development, including the potential for additional MBTA bus stops, and an MBTA Commuter Rail flagstop or station, per the MBTA approval.  Additional alternative transportation methods that we would gain include a park and pathway system for pedestrian and bicycle access.

A five-star resort located in Everett would also yield benefits for our local economy.  The establishment would provide thousands of jobs, both in construction and permanent careers, with special preference for Everett residents.  Local businesses and vendors will also benefit, many utilized by Wynn for services and others benefiting from the influx of both consumers and patrons the resort will bring to our City. Bringing jobs to our City is my top priority for any development coming to Everett and by negotiating a strong hiring preference for Everett residents, we will see the influx of thousands of good paying jobs with benefits and skills. I wasn’t just looking for jobs, I was looking for careers for Everett – and I found them with Wynn.

We now find ourselves able to decide the future of our City for generations to come. Since the beginning of this process, I have strived to keep my eye on the ball – and negotiated a beneficial agreement that will show dividends for years to come. I have played my role, but I am but one vote. When all is said and done, I am confident that the agreement we came to with Wynn Resorts will be the most robust agreement reached by a host community in all of Massachusetts, though the entirety of the benefits might not be found in its pages. I am pleased to support this project and hope you will as well.

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