The recent news of casinos coming to our area has our business leaders, especially Buffalo Niagara Partnership President Andrew Rudnick, drooling. Admittedly, a casino would create major changes in downtown Buffalo.
The prospect of rejuvenation is enticing, because a casino could bring tourism and vibrance to the empty streets of downtown at night, except, of course, Chippewa. The pockets of business leaders and owners would definitely be fattened.
However, I see a better alternative. Instead of making Buffalo's wealthy even wealthier, let's think about where rejuvenation is really needed. The East Side has a building prime for casino development - the Central Terminal. Its art-deco style makes it a landmark worthy of preservation and ripe for a casino. It is in an area of Buffalo that needs rejuvenation. A casino will bring jobs and visitors no matter where it is located. Why not place it in an area where it's needed the most?
A casino, possibly coupled with the relocation of the Broadway Market, could work wonders for Buffalo and the East Side. The casino issue should not be strictly focused on potential downtown development and office space. Rather, it should focus on creating growth in an area that desperately needs attention.