Urban One and Churchill Downs continue public meetings with residents of Richmond, Virginia, in advance of the vote for the casino resort project. The operators are answering questions from the public and publicizing the benefits the facility will bring if realized.
In 2021, media conglomerate Urban One won the bid to build and oversee a casino resort in Richmond. Although the company has no experience running casinos or even hotels, the City Council favored it over established operators including Bally’s, Golden Nugget and The Cordish Companies.
The issue of possibly opening a casino resort in Richmond was already on the ballot in 2021. However, the project, called One Casino + Resort, fell short of support at the end of the referendum. A second vote is due in November 2023, ahead of which operators are holding public meetings. The first one took place on September 28.
A joint project between Urban One and Churchill Downs, now called Richmond Grand Resort & Casino, is estimated at 562 million dollars (more than 56 billion rubles). In addition to the casino, the resort plans to open a 250-room hotel, bars and restaurants, spa and fitness centers, conference halls and a complex of outdoor pools. Also Richmond Grand Resort & Casino will offer visitors a recreational area of 55 acres. This will include a park with bike paths, hiking trails, pickleball courts and event spaces.
The casino resort will be developed by RVA Entertainment Holdings, a venture managed by Urban One and Churchill Downs. If the project is approved in a referendum, RVA promises to create 1,300 good-paying jobs. The average annual salary, including benefits, will be more than $55,000 (just under 5.5 million rubles).
The casino is also expected to generate about $30 million (2.99 billion rubles) a year in local tax revenue. According to RVA, these sreds can make Richmond a stronger and safer city.
Reminder: an AGA study confirmed the positive contribution of the gambling industry to the U.S. economy.