SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - Ameristar surprised many on Friday when it announced it would end its bid for a Springfield casino.
Ameristar had plans and property secured in East Springfield.
For Larry Griffin and his family, they're happy there won't be a casino located right off of Page Boulevard. "My mother lives right near Ameristar, I have a cousin who was literally in the backyard and it would have been a nightmare. I haven't spoken to him but he's going to be very relieved," said Griffin.
The casino company had proposed a $58 million traffic plan that would feed traffic directly into the casino. It was part of the more than $900 million proposal.
Ameristar cleared the 40 acres of the former Westinghouse site when it bought it for $16 million and now residents hope it doesn't just stay an empty lot.
Ryan Mcintosh, who works near the site, said," Put to use someway maybe a shopping center or anything that the city might benefit from as opposed to being a waste."
Despite one company down, there are still two more in the running so Springfield is not out of the picture.
"I'm not sure casinos at large I agree with, but if they're coming to Mass I'd like the jobs and everything in Springfield if they put it in the right place. I think downtown is not so much in the backyard," said Griffin.
MGM Resorts has paid the $400 thousand application fee. Penn National has until the December 14th deadline.