A Framework for the Successful Integration of Casinos into Sustainable Communities
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Casinos are currently one of the most popular real estate and economic development tools used by planners throughout America. As the stigma fades from casinos and gaming in general, many urban areas throughout the country are battling to be the sites of casinos, supposedly engines of economic development and place making. This paper explores the impacts of casinos on economic development, environmental sustainability and social equity; and how policymakers, casino development plans, and community comprehensive plans address sustainability issues. The author finds that in some cases, the benefits of casino development are overstated and not suitable for communities wishing to enhance sustainability. However, for the communities explored in this paper, converting casinos into alternate uses is difficult, and it may be necessary to implement sustainable strategies given the likelihood that casinos will remain a part of these communities’ future.