Contractor wants to build amusement park at casino

By David Skolnick


If James A. Traficant Jr. somehow gets an Indian gambling casino in North Jackson, a Warren contractor said he wants to build the possible indoor amusement park that could go along with it.

John J. Bartko, president of Exclusive Product Industry Corp., said he’s “never built anything like” an indoor amusement park, but it shouldn’t be hard.

“I’ve built a lot of stuff,” such as churches, post offices, libraries and school additions, Bartko said.

Most of the materials, such as the dome on the indoor park, would be prefabricated and easy to install, he said.

The contractor said he had no idea how big the potential park would be.

“I don’t know the details of the contract,” Bartko said.

Bartko said he’s had conversations with Traficant about building the park. But the two don’t have a written — or even a verbal — agreement for the project, Bartko said.

“I really don’t care if I do the project or not to be honest with you,” he said.

Bartko said his company has formed a partnership with Two Worlds Park Co., a Youngstown-based management firm to design the facility. Carl Severino, who runs Two Worlds, couldn’t be reached Monday by The Vindicator to comment.

Also, George Saadi, Traficant’s agent, said he is “unsure” about his client’s relationship with Bartko, and referred comment to Bartko.

Traficant claims an indoor amusement park could be part of an economic development package in North Jackson that would include an Indian casino, hotel, convention center, bank and a $350 million data center.

Traficant claims the data center would create more than 300 jobs in five years; something met with some skepticism from those familiar with the industry.

Indian casinos aren’t permitted in Ohio under state and federal law. Traficant has said the casino is the linchpin to the entire project.

In three recent public appearances about the proposal, Traficant has failed to provide specifics about the plan.

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