Posted on: December 14, 2022, 01:09h.
Final up to date on: December 14, 2022, 01:23h.
Baltimore-based Cordish Firms hopes one in all its subsequent main growth initiatives comes by means of Virginia within the city of Petersburg.
A rendering of the $1.4 billion mixed-use growth and built-in on line casino resort being proposed by The Cordish Firms for Petersburg, Va. Officers within the Virginia metropolis are hoping to achieve state authorization to maneuver ahead with a gaming venture to spur regional financial exercise. (Picture: The Cordish Firms)
The Petersburg Metropolis Council Tuesday night time revealed Cordish’s pitch for Petersburg. The operator of Reside!-branded casinos in Maryland and Pennsylvania says it’s keen to spend $1.4 billion to convey a on line casino and resort vacation spot to Petersburg, situated about 20 miles south of the Richmond capital.
Reside! On line casino & Lodge Virginia, because the venture is being known as, can be accomplished over a number of growth phases. The scheme, if authorised by the state and native voters, would occupy about 80 acres of land at Wagner Street off Interstate 95.
The preliminary section features a on line casino ground spanning 230,000 sq. ft, a 200-room resort, greater than a dozen eating places, a resort pool, a health middle, and a customizable occasions middle.
Zed Smith, chief working officer for Cordish, mentioned that the on line casino may very well be a “catalyst for change” in Petersburg.
[Live! Casino & Hotel Virginia] will remodel the town by making a thriving leisure and hospitality attraction for your entire area and supply first-class facilities for the local people whereas producing spin-off financial growth, creating hundreds of latest jobs for space residents and substantial alternatives for native, minority, women-owned, and veteran-owned companies,” Smith mentioned.
Cordish’s present on line casino portfolio consists of Reside! On line casino & Lodge Maryland, Reside! On line casino & Lodge Philadelphia, and Reside! On line casino Pittsburgh.
Subsequent Reside! On line casino & Lodge Virginia enlargement phases, that are included within the proposed $1.4 billion total finances, would enhance the property’s footprint to incorporate a complete of 500 visitor rooms and produce greater than 1,300 residential items to the property. Retail purchasing and extra leisure and eating choices can be included within the subsequent expansions.
Many Hurdles Stay
The Petersburg Metropolis Council Tuesday night time voted unanimously in favor of choosing The Cordish Firms as its most well-liked gaming growth accomplice. However whereas native officers and the on line casino firm need to construct the resort, playing is at the moment unlawful in Petersburg.
Virginia legalized industrial playing in 2020, however solely within the economically troubled cities of Richmond, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Bristol, and Danville. Every city can solely transfer ahead with a on line casino with the native blessing of their voters by means of a poll referendum. All however Richmond held profitable referendums authorizing a on line casino.
Richmond metropolis officers hope to reask their constituents a couple of on line casino once more sooner or later. State Sen. Joe Morrissey (D-Richmond, Petersburg), whose district encompasses Petersburg and components of the capital metro, believes the folks have spoken and that Richmond’s on line casino alternative must be reallocated to close by Petersburg.
For Petersburg to contemplate authorizing the Cordish on line casino plan, state lawmakers would first have to qualify the realm as a permissible gaming locale. Petersburg would then want to achieve approval from voters.
Questionable Bidding Course of
Even when the Virginia Basic Meeting and Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R) had been to transform the state’s 2020 gaming invoice to qualify Petersburg, authorized issues may very well be raised relating to Petersburg’s resolution to accomplice with Cordish.
Not like the 4 different cities in Virginia which might be transferring ahead with casinos that held aggressive bidding rounds for the alternatives in a public, clear approach, Petersburg did its negotiating behind closed doorways.
Metropolis officers disclosed final night time that as an alternative of forming a committee to guage proposals from on line casino builders, Petersburg contracted a 3rd occasion to area the submissions. Lisa Speller, whose Speller Consulting Group has been paid as a lot as $10K a month by the town for consulting companies, says she reviewed a handful of submissions earlier than deciding on Cordish.