Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Bally's responds after casino proposal is no longer considered in Richmond

A resort casino evaluation panel in Richmond, Va., has reduced the list of proposed casino projects being considered to two, Live! Casino & Hotel Richmond and ONE Casino + Resort.

The proposed Bally’s Richmond Casino Resort and the project’s proposed site of Parkway Crossings (Chippenham Parkway and Powhite Parkway) are no longer being considered by Richmond's Resort Casino Evaluation Panel, officials said in a press release on Wednesday.

The Evaluation Panel is no longer considering the Bally’s project or the Parkway Crossings site for a resort casino due to concerns about site access, environmental factors, and required approvals from non-city entities that may not be granted or extend the project timeline,” said Leonard Sledge, director of the city’s Department of Economic Development. “We also appreciate the many Richmond citizens who have shared their thoughts throughout this process.”

President and Chief Executive Officer of Bally's, George Papanier, said his company's proposal is the best for Richmond and provided the largest financial package with the most economic benefit to RVA residents and business owners. “We were deeply committed to this project, as well as to becoming a responsible neighbor and member of the Richmond community,” Papanier said. “Should the city reconsider its decision, we would be pleased to reengage."

Papanier continued, “With a total value of $650 million, including an upfront, unrestricted $100 million payment to the city, along with $28-$30 million in annual tax payments, Bally's Richmond offered the largest financial package of the remaining finalists. Bally's Richmond was estimated to attract approximately 3.7 million visitors annually, generating $415 million in annual total gross revenue, $5.3 billion in economic value over 10 years as well as creating over 2,000 full-time equivalent jobs.”

Bally's currently owns and manages 12 casinos across eight states, a horse racetrack and 13 authorized Off Track Betting licenses in Colorado.

"We respect the city's decision, and look forward to providing our best-in-class online sports betting platform to sports fans across the State of Virginia under our recently awarded temporary sports wagering permit.” Currently, there are six online sports betting services available in Virginia.

Richmond's evaluation panel is continuing its evaluation of the remaining proposals and sites (Live! Casino & Hotel at 1301 N. Arthur Ashe Boulevard and ONE Casino + Resort at 2001 Walmsley Boulevard).  Factors in the evaluation of the proposals include:  community impact and community benefits; location; direct revenue impact to the city; project feasibility and project sustainability; and economic development impact.

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