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Leave Your Car at Home for Encore Opening: Officials

Ahead of this weekend's grand opening of Encore Boston Harbor casino, officials unveiled their plans for public safety and transportation on Wednesday.

The Everett, Massachusetts hotel and casino will open its doors to the public at 10 a.m. Sunday.

"We are ready and able to make road and traffic adjustments on opening day," Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria said. "I'm confident we have the resources in place... but please leave your car at home."

Just as when visiting Fenway Park, he said those coming to the casino should plan ahead and take public transportation.

Those planning to visit the casino on opening day are encouraged to use commuter rail, premium motor coaches and Encore Boston Harbor water shuttles.

"This plan has been years in the making," said Robert DeSalvio, president of Encore Boston Harbor. He said the casino has "probably one of the most comprehensive transportation plans that has been put together."

Everett Police Chief Steven Mazzie likened the casino's opening to Y2K, saying everyone was concerned and nothing wound up happening.

"Of course there's going to be some traffic," he said. "But we're prepared."

From synchronized traffic signals to real-time traffic monitoring and adjustments, police will be working to avoid traffic jams and will shut down the roads around the casino if they become too congested.

"We can't jeopardize the safety of our residents just because people want to come here," DeMaria said.

The resort boasts a 4 a.m. last call for alcohol, gambling and more than a dozen restaurants. Rooms at the hotel range from around $700 to $2,600 per night for the first few weeks of business.

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