The team from Encore Boston Harbor hosted its first community update meeting at the Connolly Center on Thursday evening since its rebranding in April.
John Tocco, executive director of Government Affairs and Community Relations, was pleased to speak to Everett citizens on behalf of Encore Boston Harbor for the first time.
Tocco first apologized for any traffic inconveniences, but assured residents will be pleased with the end results.
Lower Broadway in Everett will soon be widened to accommodate additional traffic flow to the casino. Simultaneously, but out of Encore Boston Harbor’s jurisdiction, the Alford Street bridge will be under construction and reduced to one lane, similar to its original reconstruction. While the timeline for the bridge is currently unclear, Tocco was assured it will be completed prior to the grand opening of Encore Boston Harbor. Residents were encouraged to stay updated on traffic flow by visiting WynnForAll.com.
Construction Director Peter Campot provided a detailed update on the progress of building the resort, showcasing photos and images depicting walls beginning to take shape within the steel structure. In addition to the physical developments, Campot proudly described that of the 1,500 construction workers, many of them from Everett.
“We have probably the largest female workforce on site, with over 100 women, and at least 150 veterans. We talk about how it takes a village, and we have a village working together,” Campot said.
Campot proceeded to praise the quality of the workforce, explaining that those in charge of the final approval from Wynn resorts have been very impressed with the quality of construction, which is not limited to the visually enticing elements, and includes the structure, mechanical, and electrical features.
Brian Gullbrants, executive director of Operations, was introduced to the audience as a newcomer to the Encore Boston Harbor team. Gullbrants worked for Wynn resorts in Las Vegas for 10 years, providing a five-star experience to guests before transferring to Boston 10 months ago. He outlined the vision for the resort coming to Boston, including all the glitz and glamour.
“The first thing you’re going to see is this huge, vaulted ceiling,” Gullbrants said, reinforcing the many visual diagrams that were being projected on screen at the Connolly Center. “Popeye will kind of be the cherry on top, right in between the escalators.”
The visual descriptions did not cease at the interior of the building. More than 900 trees are being planted around the resort under the guidance of Construction Director Peter Campot.
“I believe it will rival any garden, or any public garden close by,” Gullbrants shared, as he captivated the audience. “You’re looking at me like there’s no way that’s going to happen, but I’m telling you it’s going to happen. Beautiful trees, beautiful gardens, and you to finish the picture.”
In addition to the decor, approximately a dozen restaurants and a night club are expected to be included within Encore Boston Harbor’s walls, which are currently within the planning process.
Gullbrants proceeded to describe some of the 4,500 jobs that will come with the resort, which he emphasized will be prioritized to local residents.
“We have people to check you in and check you out, people to take care of your plans, concierge. Then you will walk into the casino and there will be people to assist you with slot machines, cocktails, dealers, and pit bosses,” he said. “All of these positions will need to be filled with people such as yourselves, your neighbors, and people from your community.”
Gullbrants further assured those in attendance that training for such career opportunities will be announced soon, and collaborations between local schools will provide residents with training opportunities to Wynn corporation standards. Gullbrants excitedly remarked that the resort would be in full operation and opening in 403 days as of the meeting.
To conclude the meeting, Jennie Peterson, in charge of recruitment, spoke of opportunities and career paths in greater detail.
“Part of the reason we are so thrilled to partner with Everett is to create career opportunities,” Peterson said. “Over 4,500 individuals will staff our team in well over 400 job titles. Pretty much any job you can think of, we’ve got it.”
Peterson proceeded to explain that Encore Boston Harbor is about career opportunities and advancement as opposed to simply applying for a job. She displayed diagrams sampling career paths, such as an entry level job in the culinary department leading to an executive chef position over a period of years.
Right now, Encore Boston Harbor is hiring management level team members for those experienced in the casino and hospitality business, in addition to a few entry level positions. By the end of 2018, approximately 100 new employees are expected to be added, but the mass hiring for the remaining jobs will occur in 2019.
“We’re going to be launching a lot of marketing, and you’ll hear more about the jobs. We’re going to be advertising the gaming school that will be starting in September, and launch a completely new career website in June,” Peterson explained, referring listeners to the online tools available now such as the Encore Boston Harbor talent network.
A satellite career center will be opening at Everett City Hall in June, where residents can visit to inquire about potential opportunities and learn how to prepare for them. This will allow inquiring minds to ask questions and learn how to prepare for such opportunities as they become available. A similar career center will open at Station Landing later in the summer.
Encore Boston Harbor has made a smooth transition after its rebranding and looks forward to continue progress leading up to its grand opening in June of 2019.