Edmonton casino to cut back to reduce losses
The economy isn’t performing so well in Western Canada, and a casino in Edmonton is making moves to try to mitigate the losses that are piling up. Grand Villa Casino Edmonton announced that as of September 15, it will offer gambling only four days each week. The casino will only operate on Thursdays through Sundays from noon to 1 a.m., though it will open any time there is a major sport, event or concert at the nearby Rogers Place arena. Since the casino opened in 2016, it has been operating every day from 10 a.m. to 3 a.m. This latest move follows the company laying off dozens of workers to try to cut back. The company says the cut backs were necessitated by a weak economy in the greater Edmonton region, as well as a lack of well-lit parking on-site.
Weak economy and poor transportation to blame
The economy of the greater Edmonton area is to blame for much of the cutbacks that Grand Villa Casino Edmonton is doing. While the casino’s director of public relations, Tanya Gabara, said the changes are just temporary adjustments for now, they are “necessary due to the lack of business caused by the extensive delays in the construction in the downtown core and lack of well-lit surface parking in close proximity to the casino.”
Unfortunately for the people who enjoy going to the casino, and for those who work at the casino, gambling is often one of the first industries affected by an economic downturn. As people have less money in their pockets and feel a tightening all around them, they begin to cut back themselves on discretionary spending. And casino gambling as well as other forms of entertainment are often some of the first items cut out of a person’s budget.
While the company has said the changes they are making now are temporary, they don’t have an idea of how long they might last, or what exactly can be done to rectify the challenge in the short-term.
The Grand Villa Casino Edmonton is owned by Gateway Casinos & Entertainment. The casino currently has 60,000 square feet at its location that is dedicated just to gaming space.
Employees will be affected
With the significant cut back in hours and days of operation, it’s obviously expected that even more employees will be affected. Already in the last few weeks, both part- and full-time employees have been let go in an effort by Grand Villa to limit its losses. Casino employees as well as third-party services (such as employees at stores such as Starbucks) have been affected by the cutbacks.
Garbara said that it’s, “difficult to state an exact number of impacted employees at this time until all of these options have been explored with our employees, which is our priority.” Considering how large the cut back in operating hours is, though, it can only be anticipated that the cut back in staff might be large as well.
The union that represents the casino employees said it is doing everything it can to try to help the laid off workers find training, assistance and new jobs as soon as possible. The union also contradicts the company’s statements that the cut backs were necessary because of construction delays, and a potential fight could be in order between the union and the employer.
As this casino makes cut backs, there are still ways for you to enjoy the action. Check out one of the online casinos below.