Urban One Chosen for New Richmond Casino
The Virginia capital city of Richmond has chosen Urban One to create a casino after reviewing six bids in total.
The battle for the Richmond, Virginia casino license has been a long one. For months now, we have watched as six companies provided bids, including the amount to be spent and plans to create a casino in the capital city. Major companies were in the mix but apparently, the city decided to go with a company that is new to the game. This week it was announced that officials have decided to go with Urban One, a media company.
Urban One Wins
Urban One is a media company whose main goal is to be the most trusted source in the African American community. The company gained the full support of the capital city and will now be given the only gaming privileges in town. As the official winner, Urban One was able to beat out Bally’s Corporation and The Cordish Companies to win the bid with its ONE Casino + Resort plans.
Mayor Levar Stoney said that the ONE Casino + Resort showcases a tremendous opportunity to create a casino resort in the city. The project will provide more than 1,000 jobs that offer good pay along with generating revenues for the city that are quite significant.
The company would like to create its casino on 100 acres of land that is located next to the Philip Morris headquarters. The land is off I-95 and would be home to an integrated resort that cost over $600 million to create.
The property would include a large, 100,000 square foot casino that is home to 2,000 slot games and 110 table games. The casino will also feature a sportsbook. Along with the gambling venue, the property will be home to a hotel with 250 guest rooms, 15 bars and restaurants, plus a spa, event center, park and green space.
Because of the news, the stock of Urban One shot up to higher than usual numbers. Shares on Nasdaq of the company went up almost 60%, reaching $9.56 at close. The company has partnered with Peninsula Pacific Entertainment to create the new gambling venue. The gaming company’s portfolio includes several properties such as the Hard Rock Casio in Iowa as well as the del Lago Resort & Casino in New York and Colonial Downs in Virginia.
What’s to Come?
While the city decided to go with Urban One, they have yet to determine if the project will actually move forward. Last November, four out of five eligible cities in the state voted to approve new casinos. Richmond was the only one that did not hold a vote yet.
The city went a little backwards with the process and decided to wait on the vote and take bids on casino projects first. They will now put the plan forth the voters this November and see what happens. A simple majority is needed in order to move the ONE project forward. Once authorized, the construction process can begin.
If approved, the ONE casino will be the only black-owned casino in the United States. The company has recruited over 50 minority investors to develop the project.
The two other finalists, Bally’s and The Cordish Companies, ran into opposition from the locals with their project plans. Both saw protests involving the sites of their proposed casinos due to various reasons. For Bally’s, the locals worried about traffic as well as disturbing the land, including a potential gravesite. For Cordish, the locals just didn’t seem happy with the location and what issues it might bring such as traffic and crime.
For now, Urban One will have to wait and see what the locals decide and if they will be able to move forward with the project in the future.