Richmond RFP Application Phase Closes with at Least Four New Casino Project Proposals

No less than four large casino resort projects proposed to be established on some of the most attractive properties across Richmond as part of the city’s gambling sector expansion.

For the time being, the city authorities have not shared the exact number of proposals it had received by the application deadline on February 22nd. Still, at least four projects have been announced by casino developers – two along Commerce Road, one next to Powhite Parkway and Chippenham Parkway, and one seeking to occupy the Movieland property in Scott’s Addition. Under the provisions of state law, the city is allowed to establish one casino only, so the local authorities would have to choose their preferred casino operator.

So far, all of the casino developers have made efforts for minority investments in their projects, with a number of NFL Hall of Fame stars appearances, and the Indian tribe with gambling rights in the state of Virginia considering a new location for its proposed casino in South Richmond.

The applications for the casino venue establishment were submitted before the closure of the deadline on Monday 22nd. The proposals were unveiled in response to Richmond’s request for proposals to build a casino resort under the 2020 state law that made casino gambling legal in Richmond and four other cities across the state.

Voters in the cities of Danville, Norfolk, Bristol and Portsmouth already gave their approval to the proposed casino projects, but Richmond has one more year to select a preferred casino developer and project to submit to local voters for approval.

Local Referendum on Casino Operator and Project Will Probably Take Place in the Autumn

A spokesman for Richmond’s Mayor Levar Stoney revealed that the city is set to release the names of all participants in the request-for-proposal phase within the next week or so.

Recently, the city revealed that the proposals are set to be reviewed by an evaluation panel that includes seven administration officials and two City Council members, but an outside consulting firm is set to also participate in the consideration process and make some recommendations to the Mayor. Then, the Richmond City Council is set to vote on a recommended operator and location, with a local referendum possibly set to take place in the autumn.

Bally’s Corp. has made a submission for the establishment of a $650-million casino venue on a 61-acre property at the northeast part of the Chippenham and Powhite parkways in South Richmond. On Monday, the Cordish Companies submitted a project to establish a $600-million casino resort on a 17-acre Movieland property. The gambling company already operates a number of casinos under the Live! brand in Philadelphia, Baltimore, Hollywood, Pittsburgh and Tampa.

Today, a $517-million casino project is set to be officially announced by the Washington media company Urban One and Peninsula Pacific Entertainment. The proposed resort is set to be situated on a property at Commence Road, which is currently owned by Philip Morris USA.

As mentioned above, the Pamunkey Indian Tribe has also participated in the application process with a $350-million project that is planned to be built in the 5,000 block of Commerce Road. This is a new location for the project, as the Pamunkey Indian Tribe tried to avoid the neighborhoods in South Richmond that opposed its original project.

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