MGM Springfield - On Site
One in a Series of Periodic Site Updates
--MGM Springfield Reports Progress to the City
--Zanetti School Alumni Gather On Site
--Another Call Out for Bidders
SPRINGFIELD (MA) April 22, 2015 – The MGM Springfield team is working around the clock to fulfill responsibilities leading to demolition work on the 14.5 acres in Springfield's South End that will soon become the state’s first casino resort. With a few state and local approvals still pending, MGM recently reported progress in many key areas to the City of Springfield in a detailed compliance report.
MGM continues to be responsive to city residents as well, as it recently hosted a nostalgic moment where the Zanetti School became a photo backdrop for a gathering of alumni taking a final school picture before the historic structure damaged by the June 2011 tornado. The school is in the center of the MGM Springfield construction zone and slated for demolition.
Building off the momentum of its recent groundbreaking, MGM Springfield also continues to reach out to potential bidders who would like to be part of the construction phase of MGM Springfield.
Seth Stratton, MGM Springfield Vice President and General Counsel, said, "Our team has been in overdrive checking all the necessary boxes to start the demolition phase. That has included tenant relocations, engaging in the historical commission discussion and process, and ongoing community relations. With a lot of mutual cooperation we have made significant progress on these important issues. We look forward to a day in the near future that will change the skyline and the future of the South End."
City of Springfield Compliance Report
On April 1, MGM Springfield delivered its first Compliance Report to Mayor Domenic Sarno and his team as required by the Host Community Agreement (HCA). Included was a 50-page summary of MGM's efforts to fulfill the commitments made within the HCA. Two areas of important note are business opportunities for local vendor and suppliers, as well as progress to develop workforce training options for local residents interested in future employment opportunities at MGM Springfield.
Local Business Impact
For two years, MGM has been a fixture at business events throughout the Commonwealth to introduce team members in both diversity relations and procurement, and to inform interested parties about the supplier, vendor and service contracts becoming available. It has hosted its own informational sessions, as well as participated in the Western Massachusetts Business Expo, a regional business-to-business expo, the Center for Women and Enterprise Annual Women Business Leaders Conference, and dozens of chambers of commerce events.
Gerri Harris, MGM Resorts Executive Director, Diversity & Contracts, said, "My team has enjoyed engaging with local businesses at a number of popular forums. We have built relationships, and encourage vendors to register in our database that will allow us to easily connect with appropriate vendors and suppliers as needs open up on our evolving construction site."
As a result of the outreach events, 140 suppliers from Massachusetts registered in the MGM Resorts vendor database by the end of 2014, with 93 of those businesses with addresses from Springfield and West Springfield. Some 35 percent of those registered in 2014 were classified as diverse business ownership.
As of February, the number of businesses registered with the MGM Resorts procurement team stood at 206 and growing.
Harris added, "We are in the final stages of a comprehensive review and approval process to award initial vendor contracts under the guidelines of Massachusetts law, and we will be looking to this rich database of diverse companies for many of those opportunities."
Also noted in the Compliance Report, MGM Springfield is estimated to bring 3,000 permanent jobs and 2,000 construction jobs to Downtown Springfield. MGM has established a hiring goal for MGM Springfield of 35 percent of the workforce from the City of Springfield and 90 percent from a combination of Springfield and the region.
Since 2012, MGM Resorts has engaged with Western Massachusetts career service teams and the Regional Employment Board to better understand the existing workforce, training opportunities and skill capacity and to discuss career opportunities at MGM Springfield. In the past three years, MGM and representatives of MGM Resorts have participated in career fairs at UMass Amherst, Springfield College, Boston University, American International College and the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality Northeast Regional Conference in Amherst.
Marikate Murren, MGM Springfield Director, Training & Workforce Development, said, "We have made our outreaches personal so we get a real feel for the talent, needs and interest level. Both our presence at large scale events and informal discussions with individuals have put us in contact with students enrolled in two-year and four-year college degree programs in hospitality, culinary arts, management, operations and IT systems."
Additionally, MGM Resorts International has recruited and hired students from Western Massachusetts for internship and management training opportunities in their Las Vegas properties. These students, representing a number of Springfield and regional institutions of higher education, are receiving hands-on experience in a variety of operational areas and gaining management insights from mentors and executives of MGM Resorts International.
One such case is Victor Ronca, a UMass Amherst graduate from Agawam, MA. Ronca enrolled in MGM's Management Associate Program (MAP) to gain experience in the company's Las Vegas operations ahead of the MGM Springfield opening, and has since been promoted twice. After first being named a supervisor in table games, he was then promoted to Assistant Manager of Slot Operations at the MGM Grand Las Vegas. Prior to joining MAP, Ronca worked as a campaign organizer for the Yes for Springfield effort, where he helped coordinate campaign and community outreach activities.
Murren added, "The reports from the MGM Resort team who are working with Victor say the guests love him, and he is a positive influence on our casino floor. It is our hope that we can lure Victor back to Springfield in 2017 to hit the ground running."
Ronca said, "I have learned so much through MGM's MAP. MGM Springfield will be an important catalyst for the City of Springfield. I'm excited about the possibility of returning home to be part of the MGM Springfield team that will carry out the vision for a renewed downtown."
MGM Springfield is in the process of providing a “First Choice” recruitment program in partnership with the Massachusetts Casino Careers Training Institute to provide City of Springfield residents the first opportunity to learn about and apply for positions at MGM Springfield.
MGM Springfield continues to work in partnership with Holyoke Community College and Springfield Technical Community College to increase the capacity of training and educational programs to prepare the workforce.
Additionally, through the partnerships with the Massachusetts Casino Careers Training Institute, UMass Amherst and other four-year college partners in Western Massachusetts, MGM is collaborating on curriculum development to prepare individuals for potential job opportunities through job readiness classes, English as a Second Language courses, and increasing the availability of adult basic education courses.
Zanetti Alumni Picture
On April 15, former teachers and students stood together in front of the Zanetti School on Howard Street to take a lasting image before the school is taken down as part of the MGM Springfield construction. City Councilor Tim Allen, a former teacher at Howard Street School, worked with MGM Springfield team members as well as Springfield Public Schools to organize the photo shoot. More than 215 people aged five-65 attended.
Kelley Tucky, MGM Resorts Vice President of Community Relations and Public Affairs - Eastern Region, said, "MGM Springfield is pleased to play a small role in this special gathering. Being a good neighbor in every community we reside in is very important to MGM. We look forward to bringing activity and life back to the South End so new memories can be created for generations to come."
New Call for Bidders
MGM Springfield recently invited contractors who provide structural frames, hoisting and cranes, and masonry and miscellaneous metals to attend interview sessions to learn more about the opportunities available during construction of MGM Springfield. This was the third round of such sessions. At these meetings, MGM Springfield construction management representatives interview interested bidders and learn about the scope of work, how to participate in the pre-qualification process, and MGM Springfield’s policy on minority contractors, vendors, and purchasing.
The construction of MGM Springfield will offer opportunities in a wide range of property components, such as early work and offsite work for the garage, casino, hotel tower, and retail plaza. Each component will allow for various bid opportunities for local contractors in both prime and sub roles.
The masonry and miscellaneous metals interviews will be conducted tomorrow. For more information, call the MGM Springfield community office at 413-735-3000. All meetings will take place at the office located at 1441 Main St. Contractors must schedule an appointment to avail a 30-minute slot. Walk-in appointments are discouraged. Qualified certified business enterprises including Minority (MBE), Women (WBE) and Veteran (VBE) are encouraged to apply.
About MGM Springfield
On June 13, MGM Springfield received the unanimous vote of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, and the first approval of a casino license in the Commonwealth. Following the defeat of a gaming repeal ballot question on Nov. 4, MGM Springfield formally received its license on Nov. 7. MGM Springfield, an approximately $800 million resort, is slated for 14.5 acres of land between Union and State streets, and Columbus Avenue and Main Street. For more information about MGM Springfield please visit www.mgmspringfield.com.
About MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM)
MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) is one of the world's leading global hospitality companies, operating destination resort brands including Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and The Mirage. The Company also owns 51 percent of MGM China Holdings Limited, which owns the MGM Macau resort and casino and is in the process of developing a gaming resort in Cotai, and 50 percent of CityCenter in Las Vegas, which features ARIA Resort & Casino. For more information about the company please visit www.mgmresorts.com.