The slot machine establishment that open for business nearly three years ago in a remodeled restaurant will start its move up the street to bigger quarters on July 1st, 2008 as one of the state’s biggest gambling projects in recent years nears its completion. The cost for the Hollywood Slots Hotel and Raceway has increased from an initial expense of $70 million to $132 million, an amount that includes the gaming facility, a 1,500 parking space and a one hundred fifty-four hotel room. The general manager of the establisment John Johnson commented that they plan to keep on expanding the area.
The state of Maine’s lone slots establishment is allowed to offer 1,500 slot machines but will begin their operation with one thousand slot machines. That number will include five hundred twenty-five slot machines and 475 slot machines that have been utilized at the temporary gaming facility in the former Miller’s Restaurant. Johnson said that the number of customers at the temporary slots facility, have exceeded their expectations and attracted around two million players since opening its doors to the public in November 2005.
The owner of Hollywood Slots, Penn National Gaming Incorporated from Wyomissing, Pennsylvania is hopeful that they will experience the same success with their temporary facility. The new establishment features a 250 seat restaurant that features the biggest buffet in Maine, a snack bar and a stage that features live entertainment. The facility will also have 400 security cameras to protect customers. The permanent facility’s main goal is to attract customers that will travel to Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun in Connecticut and Canadian citizens who want to go to the border to entertain themselves.
The project has been a good development for Bangor, a city of 31,000 residents. Aside from providing three hundred temporary jobs, the facility will also employ around five hundred people and it is expected to produce around $3 million profits for the city annuallly and $2 million in property taxes.
The City Manager, Ed Barrett commented that the permanent facility is currently fueling an economic boom in the city. But not all of the residents are in favor of the slots facility. Casinos No!, an anti-casino group in Maine said that this is not a good solution for the budget problem in Maine and state officials should look for a better way to solve this problem