The demonstrators were/are there in opposition to the proposed Riverview Casino
, a sprawling facility that would be built adjacent to the Columbia Bottom Conservation Area
and the confluence of the Missouri and MIssissippi rivers.
The protest was organized by The Common Sense Coalition
, a group of more than 20 organizations that are united by their opposition to a casino next to the confluence.
They call the area "one of the most ecologically unique places in North America," consisting of wetlands, a migratory bird flyway and a floodplain. They also point out that six casinos already exist within a 30 minute drive of Riverview's proposed location.
"We want to make it clear that the confluence floodplain is no place
for a casino and we will not remain silent on the plan, despite the
Gaming Commission's refusal to hear us," Harold Hendrick of the Bott
Radio Network said in a press release sent out yesterday afternoon.
Hedrick's organization is one of the groups representing more than
15,000 people in the Common Sense Coalition to Save the
The casino, in case you missed it when we first reported it late last year
, is the brainchild of a company called North County Development LLC
. It would include:
- 8,000 parking spots
- An 18-hole golf course with two artificial lakes
- Convention center
- Wind farm to power the operation.
The St. Louis County Planning Commission has already approved
a re-zoning of the land to make construction possible but the developers still need to obtain a gaming license (the rumored demise of the Admiral
Riverboat, could help in that department) and conduct an environmental impact study.
The Missouri Gaming Commission held a meeting this morning at St. Louis County headquarters in Clayton and they were greeted by a mass of peaceful but pissed off protesters.