Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and Mohegan Tribe Announce East Windsor Casino Plans on Hold

Plans to create a casino in the East Windsor area of Connecticut are not moving forward at this time. The Mashantucket Pequot Tribe and the Mohegan Tribe were working on the project together but decided to hold off as they want to focus on their current operations.

Joint Statement

A joint statement was made by the tribes, revealing that they are going to focus on the Foxwoods Resort Casino and the Mohegan Sun for now. Both have been hard due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the operators feel it is best to focus on these venues instead of trying to move forward with a new facility.

Both the Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun were closed for many months earlier in the year. This resulted in major revenue losses. Once they were allowed to reopen, it was done so at a much lower capacity of 25%.

The tribes said that over the past seven months, the organizations have faced challenges that were unprecedented. For the future, they both want to focus on the existing facilities and ensure the successful operation of these properties. Each day there are new challenges to face and they are doing their best to take care of them.

The leaders of the tribe have spoken to state officials as well as local officials about the delay. The casino costs $300 million to create and has already been subject to several hurdles. Federal approvals were delayed as well as legal challenges from other gaming operators.

Tribal Winds

The project, known as Tribal Winds, was created to capture gamblers who would travel from Connecticut to the MGM Springfield. The casino has been in the works for quite some time and both tribes have put a lot of effort into seeing it come to fruition.

While the casino is on hold, it is not going to end. Last year, as much as $16 million was invested into the complex, which will offer entertainment and gambling services. In early projections, the property was supposed to bring in as many as 5,000 jobs.

In the joint statement, both tribes admitted that there have been so many ups and downs with the project that many times, it felt like just giving up would be the easiest thing to do. While the tribes could not predict the new delay, they believe that Tribal Winds is a viable project, and it will come to fruition once the markets improve.

When that will be is anyone’s guess. The United States is currently trying to get a vaccine for people to take so that the virus is less of a threat. But when the vaccine will be available is unknown as of right now. Citizens are also tired of wearing masks and social distancing, which is resulting in an increase in positive COVID-19 cases.

Hopefully, the next few months will see a vaccine offered and people taking the virus more seriously so everyone can stay safe and projects like the Tribal Winds can continue.

Rebecca Kont
Rebecca Kont

Rebecca lives in Las Vegas and after completing her degree at Reynolds Journalism school joined the USGS team to pursue her journalism dreams.