MGM unveils plans for western Mass. casino


SPRINGFIELD (AP) - Casino giant MGM Resorts International is unveiling its plans for an $800 million casino in downtown Springfield.

The Las Vegas-based company announced in an elaborate news conference at the MassMutual Convention Center on Wednesday that the entertainment complex would be built on 10 acres of land heavily damaged by a tornado in June 2011.

The proposal includes a 250-room hotel, 89,000 square feet of gambling space and 70,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space.

Company officials said it would provide 2,000 construction jobs as well as thousands of permanent jobs and millions of dollars in tax revenue for the city.

MGM has already submitted a $400,000K non-refundable application fee to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.

MGM Chairman Jim Murren said the presentation is "a significant demonstration of our desire to partner with Springfield."