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Would a Casino By the Stadiums Be Better Than North Broad?

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After developer Bart Blatstein came off the podium at his blowout unveiling of the Provence—his proposed casino for North Broad—TV reporters crowded around, shoving microphones in his face. Later, city officials and labor leaders vied to get their pictures taken with the man of the evening, who stood, beaming, alongside each constituency. The only usual suspect missing was the mayor himself, who has to at least pretend to objectivity in the matter of where a second Philadelphia casino will go.

Objectivity, you say? Oh! That's right! There are other human beings interested in that second casino license—and they are (as pundits like to say of presidential candidates) plausible.

Until now, Blatstein was the only bidder for the license, but a partnership between Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment (Parx in Bensalem) and Cordish Cos. (Xfinity Live) is also putting in a bid. The newly minted joint venture Stadium Casino LLC wants to put the casino into what's now a Holiday Inn by the stadiums. They'd ditch the Holiday Inn brand and devote 200,000 square feet of the building to a casino/entertainment complex. They signed an agreement for the hotel, so like Blatstein, they must feel pretty confident that they can do something with the property even if the casino piece doesn't go through.

If you had to bet on which of these projects will actually come to fruition—if you were a betting man, let's say—which do you think is more realistic? Take into account city politics, neighborhood and activist opposition, and the players involved, and leave your thoughts in the comments.

· Group eyes casino-hotel at sports complex's Holiday Inn
· Blatstein's Casino Renderings, Party Pics and Lessons Learned [CPHI]
· Blatstein Unveils Casino Plan: Say Bonjour to the Provence [CPHI]