Arundel Mills Continues Its Renovation- Part 1
The owner of Arundel Mills is publicly promoting a plan for using slot machines at the Hannover shopping mall. Although the company was formerly silent on the decision, the company, Cordish Co. announced its proposal for 4,750 slots to be installed at the mall in the beginning of 2010. Representatives are now changing their silent attitudes and promoting the slots initiative heavily. Gregg Goodman, the President of Mills division of Simon Property Group, said, “A gaming complex is especially accretive to retail sales. For us, it is basically another anchor.”
Goodman and Gene Condon, the VP and General Manager for Arundel Mills respectively, are also hoping that upscale hotel rooms and future opportunities are a huge reason to support the slot parlor project and encourage it to be built soon. Condon added, “We have delivered what we said we would deliver. We want to have the slots facility for a long period of time.” The future for Arundel Mills includes revamping existing facilities and bringing in a higher level of “luxury and decadence” to the “look” being projected to the customer. The facility now wants to reach the higher-end shoppers and gamers who visit and give them something to enjoy.
The company’s promotion of a slots parlor is just now becoming apparent. It is a critical time for them to voice their support because a state commission responsible for choosing slots locations appears ready to approve the Arundel Mills plan, and next month the council is set to vote on a controversial zoning change to allow the development. The zoning decision – mandated in the state constitution – has deadlocked the council for months as members worry whether Arundel Mills is an appropriate place and how to properly protect residents nearby.
Goodman and Condon expressed frustration with what they consider to be a routine development situation. Residents around the mall fear the slots facility will burden existing communities and cause crime to increase. They also fear that added traffic will congest the city area. Though there have been some opponents, mall officials said the appropriate time to deal with those problems is in the development, and not zoning, process. “The attitude that has been conveyed to us is just confusing,” Goodman said. “The arguments against the slots parlor are being used as an excuse to not get to the point where they are addressed.”
Part two coming next.