According to a UMass Donahue Institute study, Encore Boston Harbor’s construction in Everett generated $1.6 billion in economic activity.
Encore Boston Harbor Construction Spurs Economic Activity in Massachusetts
Business boomed at Wynn Resorts’ Encore Boston Harbor casino in Everett, Massachusetts. So much, in fact, that the building of the property generated the staggering $1.6 billion in economic windfall, with $1 billion of that clocked down as personal income a new study has revealed.
The research work put forth by the UMass Donahue Institute has taken aim at one of the strongest arguments for the legalization of gambling and casinos across the better part of the country, leading to 1,000-odd commercial and tribal properties today, i.e. that legalizing casinos would lead to the creation of permanent and seasonal jobs.
The legalization of casinos in the United States across all states came with an opportunity for small business owners and women entrepreneurs to cash in the revived economy that casinos brought on with them, proponents of casinos have argued. They may just be right and based on the findings of the UMass Donahue Institute study, the construction of Encore Boston Harbor has hit the mark.
Strong Economic Windfall for Massachusetts
The $1.6 billion in an economic windfall for the Bay State excludes the other costs associated with the project, i.e. the purchase of land to build the facility on and the license application fee, as well as the ongoing tax revenue generated for the state, said UMass senior research fellow Rod Motamedi.
In pure financial value, Encore Boston Harbor is considered a $2.6 billion project altogether, excluding the revenue from gaming taxation. Based on the study, $1.1 billion has been retained by the state of Massachusetts and local businesses.
Construction companies in the state claimed the bulk, with Suffolk County and Middlesex County splitting up the pie. Suffolk carried out around 27% of the work for a total of $425.4 million worth of contracts and Middlesex claimed 15% of the construction work carried out and clocking in $236.8 million.
According to the study, some $466 million of the construction-related spending ended up outside Massachusetts, split between 36 states.
As Many as 6,700 People Involved with Construction
So, what does the economic windfall look in hired workers? There have been some 6,700 people working on construction between 2015 and 2019, with 5.2 million hours clocked in by everyone involved.
The average worker spent 760 hours working on the project, or 19 weeks of 40-hour worth of work per week. According to the report, workers were paid an average of $36,500 or a total of $47.89 per hour, higher than the national average which is $35.83 per average.
Based on the residence of workers, which is mostly Middlesex and Suffolk counties, the study estimates that each $1.55 spent on construction led to $1 in additional economic activity.
The project has hired a diverse workforce, with 46% of all people hired identified as Asian, Black, Hispanic or Native American, and the remainder of the workforce identified as white or other. Female workers, however, added up to only 7% of the total work hours put in.
To arrive at the final figure, Motamedi said that there was roughly $2.62 billion in economic activity created by construction, with some $1.03 billion subtracted to account for the used goods and services, arriving at the final number.