MACOMB COUNTY (WWJ) – If the state decides that Michigan needs another casino and picks Macomb as the county where it will be built, County Executive Mark Hackel repeats his desire to see it located on the lakefront – unlike what happened with placement of Detroit’s casino trio.

“I don’t want to see the same thing happening here, where they just put it in a depressed area in the city of Mt. Clemens someplace. It’s just going to have absolutely no economic impact in kind of revitalizing the city of Mt. Clemens,” Hackel said.

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Lake St. Clair, with over 59 miles of shoreline, seems like the obvious location for a casino, if Hackel had his way.

“I think it would really have a tremendous impact on the boating industry if they decide to do something like that. I’ll bet if they [Detroit] had it to do it over again, they would re-think it and they would have figured out how to put those on that lakefront,” Hackel said.

He also stressed that the focus shouldn’t simply be on the casino issue. Hackel thinks improving access to the water is key to boosting Macomb County’s economy.

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“We should have some kind of a boardwalk. Macomb County should have a pier,” Hackel said.

“Why don’t we have more beachfront opportunity for people? Why aren’t there rentals for kayaks; canoes? How come we don’t have some kind of a tie-in with the zoo and create maybe a freshwater aquarium out on Lake St. Clair? We don’t even have one hotel. How come we don’t have an opportunity for having a hotel,” he asked.

Speaking with WWJ’s Roberta Jasina in March, Hackel said he would like part of the money generated by a casino to be used for cleaning up Lake St. Clair.

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