Today, BCLC issued a Request for Pre-Qualification (RFPQ) on BC Bid as a first step in selecting a Service Provider to contract with BCLC to develop and operate a potential new casino and entertainment venue to capture the tourism and entertainment market opportunity in Victoria. Pre-qualified proponents will then have the opportunity to respond to an ensuing Request for Proposals (RFP) in 2017.
The selected Service Provider must demonstrate its shared commitment to responsible gambling and social responsibility, and will be responsible for finding an appropriate location within the City of Victoria in collaboration with BCLC. The location would consider access from major arterials, available square footage, available parking and will be approved by BCLC prior to bringing it forward to City Council and the public.
As required by the Gaming Control Act, once a casino facility proposal is put forward, the City of Victoria will need to seek and consider community input.
In the meantime, BCLC remains committed to engaging with the community in order to provide information and gather feedback about any casino proposal. To assist BCLC in better understanding how the community would feel about a new gambling facility in Victoria, we asked Ipsos Reid to conduct an online survey of Greater Victoria residents on our behalf.
The survey was conducted with more than 500 residents in the Capital Regional District. The results show that more than half of those surveyed think the region would see an overall benefit from a casino and entertainment facility, and that 69 per cent believe it would appeal to tourists.
Overall, respondents were neutral about the concept of adding a facility. Tax revenue, tourism and jobs were perceived as the main benefits. Residents also indicated concerns related to gambling addiction.
To that end, BCLC will undertake a Health Impact Assessment (HIA) to measure health effects of a proposed new casino and entertainment facility in Victoria. The HIA will enable BCLC, our Service Provider and local decision makers to best understand and mitigate health risks.