Top stories 2017: Mohegans purchase former Norwich Hospital

The deal was signed April 19 by Preston and Mohegan leaders to turn over the 388-acre former Norwich Hospital property to Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment for a proposed $400 million to $600 million entertainment, recreational, sports and residential complex. While actual construction is a few years away, and there have been no announcements of specific projects to be built, the agreement is expected to bring major changes to Preston and the surrounding region. Already in downtown Norwich, developers from New York City and even Hawaii have purchased buildings and moved new businesses to the city.

The Preston town government still is operating as the small farming town, population 4,700, it has been for centuries, but town officials know changes are on the horizon. Preston will own the property, renamed Preston Riverwalk, for the next year or so, completing the final environmental cleanup, using a $10 million grant from the state to do the final work. Plans to demolish most of the few remaining buildings, however, were put on hold, at the request of Mohegan leaders, who want to consider options.

— Claire Bessette

www.theday.com/2017review

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