Springfield, Mass. casino plans heard


SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) — Penn National Gaming and MGM Resorts International, competing for a casino license in Springfield, have discussed their proposals at a public meeting.

Also Tuesday, Penn National and The Republican newspaper announced an option agreement for Penn to buy the newspaper's properties in downtown Springfield if Penn wins the license.

Penn National and local partner Peter A. Picknelly, chairman and CEO of Peter Pan Bus Lines, propose a resort casino and hotel on 13.4 acres in the North End, which also includes bus company land. Penn National said Tuesday its project includes regionally-themed restaurants, one a sports bar involving retired quarterback Doug Flutie.

MGM Resorts International proposes an $800 million resort casino, hotel and entertainment complex on a 10-block site downtown. MGM said it would include shops and apartments, and take advantage of Springfield's existing tourism assets.

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