Victory has come for activists and residents who have been fighting the development of a Casino in the Hill District. On December 20th the state Gaming Control Board granted PITG Gaming Majestic Star the casino license to construct a a slot machine parlor on the North Side near the Carnegie Science Center.
In the preceding months an Anti-Casino on the Hill movement had been gaining momentum. On Saturday, December 16th over 100 Hill District Residents and supporters gathered on Freedom Corner to say "not one more inch". This phrase was a throwback to the 1950's when thousands of residents were evicted for the Mellon Arena and development in the Lower Hill. They vowed that this harmful development would not come "one inch" further and destroy more of their neighborhood.
[ Photos from the Dec. 16 rally
| Photos from previous rallies
Many speakers at this rally likened the construction of the Isle of Capri casino to the 1950's development that severed the HIll District from Downtown. They called upon their ancestors who had a long history of struggling against wrongdoings and said that they took inspiration from them in this fight against the Casino. One Hill District resident, Mary Young, spoke of the havoc that gambling had reeked in her family while others spoke of the harm that a gambling facility can bring into an already struggling neighborhood. Bruce Barron of No Dice, and Sharon Capretto of CasinoFree Pittsburgh spoke of the problems that casinos bring to any neighborhood.
[ Listen to audio clips from the rally
[ Listen to previous audio reports: Rustbelt Radio documentary: No Casinos on the Hill
(27:14 mp3) | November 6 update: Raise your Hand rally
(11:08 mp3) ]
With the Gaming Control Board's decision to allow a Casino on the North Shore, many are rejoicing that it is not on the Hill but others feel defeated since a Casino is still being constructed in the City of Pittsburgh.
[ See previous Pittsburgh IMC feature coverage
| Read No Casino on the Hill
by Andalusia Knoll ]
The state Gaming Control Board also chose two casino locations for the city of Philadelpha, and Philly Indymedia has been covering the issue from their end of the state.
[ Philly IMC: The Casino Decisions: Broken Politics All The Way Down
| The Casinos are Coming - an extensive resource