Bally’s is looking to make a massive move in the casino industry, and it hopes to land in Richmond, Va. Last week, the company pitched a $650 million proposal to city officials in an attempt to win the casino project bid already approved by Richmond residents.
Voters in Richmond will have the chance to approve a bid in November, and Bally’s has promised a $100 million payment if voters choose the company as the winner. Bally’s is launching what it calls an “Atlantic Coast Growth Initiative,” which would be the centerpiece of that program.
Richmond city officials will be choosing between three proposals, and Bally’s is in some stiff competition. Both Urban One and Cordish Companies were said to have made a great pitch to the city, and this will be a difficult but important decision for city officials.
Bally’s is a relatively new name in the industry, but it is just a rebrand from the popular Twin Rivers Holding name. This company has 15 casinos across 11 different states in the U.S., but this project could catapult it to being one of the casino industry leaders.
Details of Project
The proposal from Bally’s includes a casino located on 61 acres of land, with 24 acres of this being wetlands. The project’s location is in the Western portion of the city, but building on the wetlands will come with some opposition.
In the proposal, the casino’s gaming floor will cover more than 117,000 square feet, which is the biggest of the three proposals that Richmond has seen. The proposal also includes a 250-room hotel as a part of this project, and more than a dozen restaurants would be available as well.
Another substantial part of this proposal by Bally’s is that it has no other properties within 200 miles of this new project.
Economic Benefits For Community
In this proposal, Bally’s highlighted the significant economic benefits for Richmond, which is the most important to city officials. The project would require more than 4,000 new construction jobs and more than 2,000 permanent new positions.
Bally’s plans to set a $15 per hour minimum wage for all positions, which would eventually rise to $17 per hour by the end of 2022. The average annual salary should be more than $52,000, much higher than the current average salary for Richmond residents.
Sports Betting Off to Great Start
While the big push from Bally’s is to earn the casino project bid from the city, sports betting is also a big part. Bally’s will have its own sportsbook available on-site at the new casino, and that industry could provide a huge revenue boost to the company as well.
Virginia sports betting launched near the end of January, but the state is already off to a great start. The state posted a total sports betting handle of $266 million in February, even though all of the betting was done online.
With the construction of new casino projects, these sports betting numbers should soar by the end of 2021.