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US – Danville votes in favour of Caesars’ Horseshoe-branded casino coming to town

By - 4 November 2020

The citizens of Danville in Virginia overwhelmingly voted in favour of the proposed Caesars Virginia casino development, passing the casino referendum on November 3 2020 with 69 per cent of the vote.

It was one of our referendums held in Virginia with residents in Bristol, Norfolk and Portsmouth also voting yes to commercial casinos being built in their cities

The Horseshoe-branded casino would be built at the former Dan River Mills industrial complex in Schoolfield at a cost of $400m and would boast 500 hotel rooms, a 35,000 square-foot conference center, a 2,500 seat live entertainment venue, multiple restaurants and bars, and 2,000 slot machines, 75 table games, 16 poker tables, and a sportsbook. The casino is expected to bring about 1,300 jobs to the area, as well as money to support economic development in Danville.

Caesars said: “Caesars Entertainment thanks the voters of Danville for their support of the referendum that will bring Caesars Virginia to Danville. We look forward to fulfilling the trust the voters have placed in us by bringing 1,300 good-paying jobs, tourism dollars and economic development to the City, and we are incredibly excited to begin construction. We’d like to offer our sincere thanks to all of our supporters, especially the City of Danville team, our campaign steering committee, campaign committee co-chairs Delegate Danny Marshall, Mayor Alonzo Jones, Dr. Tiffany Franks and Tammy Wright-Warren, Campaign Director Steven Gould, Josh Norris and the entire campaign staff. We would also like to express our deep gratitude to the many respected business owners and citizens who shared the positive impact this resort will bring to the community with their customers, friends and neighbours. We are pleased to be welcomed into the Danville community and look forward to a long, successful future.”

Ushered in by Mayor Alonzo Jones, the Danville City Council, City Manager Ken Larking, Economic Development Director Corrie Bobe, and the hard work of countless community leaders and officials, Caesars Entertainment and the City of Danville entered into an agreement on September 3rd, with the casino-entertainment company pledging the re-development of a former industrial site as a $400 million casino resort with 300 hotel rooms, 2,500 seat entertainment theater, 35,000 square feet of meeting and convention space, full-service spa, and pool. Caesars Entertainment has agreed to pay the City $20 million up front to cover potential costs associated with the project and for the purchase of the 85-acre Schoolfield property. The construction is expected to sustain 900 construction jobs, create 1,300 jobs once operational, and contribute over $34 million in gaming tax revenue to the City of Danville annually. City leaders are currently developing plans for the allocation of these significant tax revenues – providing critical aid to schools and the police department among other community needs.

Convergence Strategy Group has assisted the City of Danville since July 2019, shortly after the first casino authorisation bill was passed in the Virginia General Assembly as a means to provide assistance to economically distressed communities.

A spokesperson said: “Initially retained to assess the potential for casino development, the firm has continued to work closely with City leaders to ensure that should the citizens of Danville choose to allow a casino, they would receive the best development possible with the greatest positive impacts on their community. The project, as proposed by Caesars and selected by the City, will be collaborative with Averett University and local businesses, ensuring that the impact will be broad across Danville and surrounding Pittsylvania County. With the passage of the casino referendum, we are confident and hopeful that the people of Danville will reap the benefits of this significant development for many years to come.”

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