Construction On New Casino Gets Underway In Downtown Buffalo

August 1, 2012 Updated Aug 1, 2012 at 7:34 AM EDT

By WKBW News

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August 1, 2012 Updated Aug 1, 2012 at 7:34 AM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) - Construction on a multi-million dollar project will get underway in downtown Buffalo. The Senecas will make it official in a groundbreaking which will be held this morning.

This will be a $130 million dollar structure, much larger than the temporary casino that currently sits there now, but much smaller than a facility the Seneca's proposed years ago.

A look at drawings of what this facility will eventually look like. It will be 6 times the size of the temporary casino, add 800 slot machines and many more gambling tables.

You may remember this is a scaled down version of the Seneca's original plan for this facility. Back in 2007 they announced plans to build a 22-story hotel-casino with a spa and several restaurants.

The scaled down facility will not include a hotel and there will be only one restaurant, which may alleviate concerns that the casino will drain business from other parts of downtown Buffalo.

But not everyone is happy about this project in fact there is a lot of opposition. Many worry the location of this new casino, close to lower income neighborhoods, will lure people to spend money they don't have and in turn hurt the economy.

The Senecas hope to complete this project in a year, then you have the legal issues there are still pending lawsuits to get rid of this casino all together. Several groups have filed motions over the years arguing downtown is no place for a gambling casino.

But the Senecas say this new casino help add to Buffalo's emerging waterfront area and it will also create jobs, both during and after construction.

Regardless, Seneca Nation of Indians President Robert Odawi Porter says "They are moving full speed ahead with this project."

Ed Reilly Channel 7 Eyewitness News.