Just over half of City of Vancouver residents are opposed to the proposed expansion of Edgewater Casino in downtown Vancouver, according to a poll released today.
The Ipsos Reid poll shows 53 percent of City of Vancouver residents oppose the proposed casino complex, compared to 43 percent who support the development.
More people strongly oppose the project than are in strong support, with 33 percent of City of Vancouver residents surveyed indicating they “oppose strongly” and 14 percent in strong support.
Views on the casino-hotel complex were more divided among Metro Vancouver residents, with 48 percent of residents in favour of the complex and 45 percent opposed.
“It does appear that at least some of the perceptions of the potential social costs are higher in the City of Vancouver, and that’s probably why opposition’s higher within the City of Vancouver than the entire region,” Kyle Braid, vice-president of Ipsos Public Affairs told the Straight by phone.
According to the poll, six-in-10 Metro Vancouver residents say they agree the casino complex will result in “significant social costs” to the region. Two thirds, or 67 percent, of City of Vancouver residents say the project would result in significant social costs.
Six-in-10 City of Vancouver residents thought the project would provide "significant economic benefits" to the region, while 37 percent disagreed with that statement.
The poll also indicated that support for the project is slightly higher among men than among women.
The online poll was conducted between March 17 and 21, 2011 among a representative sample of 900 adult Metro Vancouver residents, including 250 in the City of Vancouver.
Regarding the poll's margin of error, Ipsos Reid states that "a survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±3.3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20." This would translate to an estimated margin of error of ±6.2 percentage points for the City of Vancouver sample.
The City of Vancouver is currently reviewing the Paragon Gaming proposal to relocate Edgewater Casino to an expanded site adjacent to B.C. Place.
The casino-hotel complex would be the largest in Western Canada.
Vancouver city council will resume public hearings on the proposal on April 9.