Although construction for MGM's $800 million property in Springfield first got underway in March 2015, it has been stalled due to a number of reasons. The good news is that the project is back on track and has been cleared to proceed, but as a result of the delays the launch is now slated for the fall of 2018.
The MGM Springfield casino facility was supposed to be completed by the end of 2017 but a few reasons have caused a delay. The first was that MGM - after approval - decided it was going to change the dimensions of the property. The design changes included the removal of a 25-story glass hotel while shaving the square footage of the property down by 10 percent.
That set off some red flags in state government as they started to question MGM's commitment in Massachusetts. However, everything was smoothed over. When MGM Springfield eventually opens, they'll have to pay the state of Massachusetts $25 million each year as well as a share of their profits.
The second hurdle that caused a delay was the fact that a number of historic buildings had to be preserved prior to the start of construction. MGM couldn't get going right away on construction because Springfield's historic preservation authority had to approve the plans of relocating those important buildings, and that - along with actually moving them - has taken longer than anticipated.
Thirdly, there has been construction ongoing on Interstate 91 and MGM had preferred to wait until that project was completed before getting started on theirs.
The good news is that the hurdles have been cleared and construction has begun, but the delays have proven costly. Original estimates by MGM were in the $800 million range, but with added administration, labor and materials, those estimates have ballooned to $950 million.
In total, about 700 construction workers have been put on the job thanks to this project, which will begin with the 3,400-car parking garage. As many as 2000 other temporary workers will partner throughout the building process and there is expected to be about 3000 full-time jobs created once the casino is officially opened to the public.