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US – Unite Here lends support to Urban One’ second chance in Richmond

By - 31 July 2023

Urban One and Churchill Downs’ plans for a land-based casino in south Richmond, Viriginia, has received backing from a workers’ union keen to lend its support prior to the second public vote for the project.

Unite Here 23 & 25 highligted the ‘major opportunity’ and career prospects that the casino would bring for the local economy.

Paul Schwalb, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of Unite Here Local 25, said: “We respect Urban One and Churchill Downs’ demonstrated commitment to Richmond. The resort will bring over 1,300 family-sustaining jobs to the region during construction and when the resort opens for operation.”

“This half-billion-dollar project will mean opportunities for incumbent area construction workers and for city residents desiring to enter an apprenticeship and start their careers,” Schwalb continued.

“We support this project and urge all Richmonders to vote for it, because it respects the work of our members. These middle-class careers in construction have family-sustaining wages, health insurance and a secure retirement.”

If local residents vote the prosal in, Urban One’ will build 90,000 square foot gaming floor with 2,000 slot machines, over 100 gaming tables, a competition poker room and a sportsbook, along with a 250 room, 4-Star, hotel.

Mayor Levar Stoney said: “I am excited to see the Virginia Lottery and the Richmond Circuit Court approve the referendum for a Richmond destination resort and entertainment venue that will provide 1,300 good-paying jobs and an estimated $30m in annual revenue to tackle our community’s greatest needs. Richmond is experiencing record development and growth, and with the addition of a destination resort we will change the economic trajectory of Southside for years to come.”

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