When Everett residents got together a few years ago – long before a casino was ever in the cards for the city – to discuss a plan for Lower Broadway, they wanted access to their waterfront and a marina.
On Tuesday, Mayor Carlo DeMaria reported that they got what they wanted and then some.
“When I took office in 2008, I commissioned the Lower Broadway master plan and the residents for two years or so got together and envisioned seeing a hotel and a marina and something that would generate jobs. Today they actually got what they wanted. Imagine being a resident in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and being a taxpayer and really getting exactly what you wanted? It’s just amazing. Government really worked today.
“I can’t wait to see the casino built, but also what will happen in the surrounding context in the City of Everett,” he continued. “It will just be a snowball getting bigger and bigger coming down a mountain. You won’t recognize the City of Everett in 10 years. It will no longer be the butt-end to the City of Boston but it will be the entrance to the City of Everett.”
Robert DeSalvio, senior vice president of development for Wynn, said they were excited to get things off the ground.
“We look forward very much to getting started with this project,” he said. “We know there will be twists and turns along the way, but we can’t wait to get started…We feel our project met all of the objectives of the legislation…At $1.6 billion it’s the largest private development in the history of the Commonwealth. This will really be a lot of expatriated revenue back to the Commonwealth.”
DeSalvio also thanked Mohegan Sun for being a worthy competitor.
“I want to acknowledge the energy and dedication Mohegan Sun put into their application,” he said. “I’ve known Mitchell Etess and a number of folks on the Mohegan team for many years. I know they worked very hard for this and I wish them a tremendous amount of success in their future projects. I know they’re working on some right now. They were certainly a very worthy and able competitor in the process.”
DeMaria also thanked Revere and said that city still has a lot going for it in terms of development, also noting that he is fully behind fixing Sullivan Square in Charlestown.
“You see a lot of development in the City of Revere now,” he said. “They have the Beach over there and they’re doing a great job. You see cranes and hotels and things happening. When you come to the City of Everett you have not just 30 or 40 acres of land that’s desolate, you have 1.8 square miles of opportunity. That’s what happened today…I want to thank the City of Revere and the cooperative spirit we have. Mayor Rizzo and I have a good working relationship. I have a good relationship with all the area mayors and I know I’ll be able to rally them all together…So many cities around Everett didn’t want to see the casino come here and I think that was because of the Sullivan Square issue. I really want to see that resolved…because most of the people driving through Sullivan Square are from Everett…We’ve shouldered that burden for a long time in Sullivan Square.”
He also gave a nod to his wife, Stacy, who has stood beside him through the Wynn casino campaign in the midst of persistent negative stories about him in the Boston media.
“This last campaign with Wynn has been very daunting on my family and my children as everyone probably knows,” he said. “I want to thank my wife for standing by me and being my friend and being a great wife…Some days it was tough – just getting out of bed – because you just didn’t think you did something wrong.”