3D Model of Hard Rock Bristol Unveiled For Public View

Hard Rock International Logo
Officials of the proposed Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Bristol unveiled to the public on Thursday the architectural 3D model of the project which will be built on the former Bristol Mall property. The model will be on display to the public at the former Bristol Mall from September 17-19, 2020.

The project is being spearheaded by local business leaders led by Jim McGlothlin, CEO of The United Co. and Clyde Stacy, the president of Par Ventures and owner of the 46 acre property where the proposed casino and hotel will be built. Florida-based Hard Rock who will manage the facility.

More Than Just A Casino

According to Hard Rock International Senior Vice President of Business and Casino Development Sean Caffrey said that the project will cost upwards of $350M. He emphasized that the development is more than just a casino. As the 3D model revealed, there is a hotel with a rooftop bar and a cabana flanked resort pool.

Seven restaurants and four bars are being planned for the project. Retail shops will also be an attraction while there are other areas like a sports betting shop, golf simulators, and a racing facility for children.

The other side of the property is a huge concert venue for big-name acts. Caffrey said that they’re thinking of something like the Hard Rock Live concept which would have a 3,200-seat capacity for indoor entertainment with a dual-sided stage that opens up to an amphitheater which can accommodate 20,000 people in an outdoor setting

Perk Up The Economy

Before it can be built, the project has to be approved by a public referendum on November 3rd. If the project is approved after the November 3 vote, licensing will follow and that is expected to take three to six months to complete. Once it has obtained a license, the project could take up to two years to complete. Caffrey noted however that entertainment and dining options could be offered at a temporary facility after 90 to 100 days after the licensing period.

The Hard Rock project comes to Bristol at a time when the economy is bleeding due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the long-term benefits, including a $15M annual tax revenues for Bristol, won’t be there until the project is completed, the construction will help perk up the local economy. Construction costs are expected to directly impact up to $20M to the city and it’s going to provide 2,000 direct jobs as well.

Proposed Casino Resort in South Richmond Awaits Public Approval

Downtown Richmond Virginia VIRGINIA — A forum organized Thursday by councilwoman Ellen Robertson, including a Pamunkey Indian Tribe representative and Richmond leaders, has been set up to give Richmond residents from the 6th district the opportunity to learn more the proposed casino resort that the Pamunkey Tribe are hoping to make a reality in the state’s capitol.

Thursday’s forum will include leaders from the civic and community realms, including Robert Gray, Tribal Government Chief of the Pamunkey Indian Tribe, William Smith, Richmond’s Police Chief, Mark Olinger, director of Richmond’s Department of Planning and Development Review, and Leonard Sledge, director of Richmond’s Department of Economic and Community Development.

The meeting is scheduled to run for two hours, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. local time, and will be held at the Bellemeade Community Center.

Casino Details

The Pamunkey Tribe wants to bring a ‘world-class’ resort and casino, a $350 million investment, to Richmond’s Manchester neighborhood.

Four parcels of land on the city’s Southside are either under contract by the tribe or have been purchased by them. The tribe plans to develop the mega resort off Ingram Avenue and Commerce Road, where three parcels of land, totaling 36 acres, are available for their use.

The fourth parcel of tribe-affiliated land is 13-acres worth and located off Jefferson Davis Highway, near Walmsley Blvd. According to the tribe, they would use this off-site parcel property initially as a workforce training facility. Once hiring for the resort is complete, the Jefferson David property will then serve as a beneficial space for the surrounding community, possibly a health clinic or grocery store.

The resort and casino is planned to have a four-diamond, 275-room hotel tower offering ‘stunning views of the James River and Downtown.’ A spa and fitness center, and pool are among the featured amenities. There will also be several exciting dining options, including a luxury steak and seafood restaurant, a sports bar and grill, a buffet, and food court.

“We are very excited about our plans to bring a great resort and casino to Richmond,” said Robert Gray, Chief of the Pamunkey Indian Tribe. “Not only does this help fulfill the government’s intent to use gaming to help us secure our future, but it will also be a great economic boost for the City of Richmond and its citizens.”

Legalized Casino Gambling in Virginia

Currently, Virginia doesn’t allow tribal casinos or commercial casinos, and the state hasn’t been able to be easily budged when it comes to their stance on the issue, but that’s starting to change recently. With legalized gambling becoming more streamlined throughout the country, it’s making Virginia take a close, hard look at how it could benefit their state.

In the beginning of February, the bill to legalize commercial casinos in the state was approved by the Senate General Laws and Technology Subcommittee on Gaming. Next to follow-suit are state officials, with a majority of them thus far giving the green light.

Resident approval will be the last important, crucial piece of the legalization puzzle. If the majority of voters give their approval, the Pamunkey Tribe’s envisioned casino could become a reality, as well as other casino venues in the state.

Officials Raise Concerns About New Casino in Norfolk, VA

For years, the Pamunkey Tribe of Virginia has discussed plans to open a casino. Recently, the tribe agreed to pay $10 million for a plot of land in Norfolk, where the proposed casino will be constructed. This week, several Virginia city officials raised their concerns over the plans to construct a new casino in Norfolk.

Virginia Sign

There are still several steps the Pamunkey Tribe needs to take before this casino will be approved. Today, we’re going to look at what we know about these casino plans so far. We’ll also look at why officials are hesitant to approve the plans.

Pamunkey Tribe Eager to Open Their First Casino

The Pamunkey Tribe is one of 11 Virginia Native American tribes. It’s the first federally-recognized tribe in the state. For years, heads of this tribe have pushed hard to open a casino venue. Unfortunately, Virginia has a restrictive set of gambling laws that bans full-scale casinos from operating.

Interestingly, the state does allow certain forms of casino-style games. Today, there are several gambling venues in Virginia that offer electronic slot-style games. These machines have grown extremely popular in the state and have generated major revenue.

Earlier this year, several Virginia lawmakers presented a new bill to significantly expand the state’s gambling operations. If approved, traditional casino games such as table games and slot machines will be fully legalized. It will be until 2021 until these plans are officially set into law.

That isn’t stopping the Pamunkey Tribe from working to have casino plans approved. Earlier this month, the tribe agreed to pay $10 million for a plot of waterfront land in Norfolk. The tribe has also presented plans to construct a massive $700 million casino-resort in this city.

Unfortunately, several city officials are raising their concerns with a new casino in Norfolk opening its doors.

Councilmembers Weigh Pros and Cons of New Casino in Norfolk

For many, the idea of a fully-operating casino in Norfolk is extremely exciting. It’s clear that a casino would help to generate revenue earnings for the city. Others worry about the impact it will have on emergency services, local businesses, and crime.

In an official city meeting on Monday, councilmember Andria McClellan raised several questions. She wants to know exactly how much the city will receive in tax revenue. She’s also pointing out the fact that no study has been conducted on exactly how much money a casino here will generate, and what the impact will be on city residents.

Several studies on these matters are being conducted, yet the results will not become available until after the council votes on whether or not to approve the tribe’s purchase of the land tonight. Councilman Tommy Smigiel states that the council is taking this decision very seriously. He’s taking public opinion into account.

Many Norfolk residents are unhappy with the decision to open a casino in the city. Civic League secretary Lorraine Connaughton believes the public simply doesn’t have enough information to make a decision.

“It really came across as people were skeptical … and that they were being railroaded on a deal that they quite frankly don’t have enough information on,” she said. 

We’ll need to wait and see how the city council decides to approach the plans to construct a new casino in Norfolk.

Gambling Options Available in Virginia Right Now

As we mentioned earlier, Virginia has a set of restrictive laws towards the gambling industry. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible to play your favorite casino games in this state. Today, there are several fantastic VA online casinos that are available to residents. Most of them offer a huge range of different gambling options.

Lawmakers in Virginia have not yet taken steps to regulate the online casino industry. Unlike several states such as Delaware and New Jersey, Virginia has set no direct laws on internet casino sites. Interestingly, more people in Virginia are choosing to play at US casino sites every month.

The state of Virginia appears very close to allowing traditional land-based casinos. Before long, lawmakers here may also choose to regulate internet casinos. States with state-regulated online casino platforms are earning millions of dollars a month by taxing these websites’ earnings.

Over the next few months, we’ll see whether or not the new casino in Norfolk will be approved. Perhaps in time, several brick and mortar casinos will begin opening around the state.

Make sure to stay tuned for more Virginia casino news!

Lawmakers in Virginia Said Yes to Casinos!

Virginia is on the brink of entering a new era by legalizing casino gambling in the state. That would be a huge step forward for this state as it could bring many new potential streams of revenue and attract thousands of tourists.

Last Saturday, the General Assembly approved a gambling bill which allows the construction of casinos in a couple of areas in Virginia. There’s only one thing that is left before the construction can begin, and that is the signature of the governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam.

That doesn’t seem to be a problem for the governor, as he already stated that he was willing to sign everything needed for the construction to begin. In other words, if he didn’t change his mind in the past couple of days (which is highly unlikely), it seems that Virginia is about to legalize gambling and begin building casinos. The reason why the governor supported this bill was his intention to create more income, and, above all, more jobs for the people of Virginia, especially in those areas of the state that are currently suffering from huge deficits.

The bill is called Substitute Senate Bill (SSB) 1126, and it did not have trouble making it through both the House and Senate. According to this bill, casinos are going to be built in Bristol, Danville, and Portsmouth. However, these three cities would still have to approve building the casinos on their land, and it seems that the residents of those cities are going to decide whether they are ready to accept a casino. Furthermore, according to the bill, two additional places can be included for building casinos—Norfolk and Richmond—which are mainly targeted by Pamunkey Indians who want to build tribal casinos in those areas.

Virginia Is One Step Away from Building Casinos

Virginia has had its ups and downs when it comes to gambling, as there were many attempts to offer a gambling market, but none actually succeeding as much as SSB 1126. In other words, it seems that they have made huge progress since all the previous attempts have failed. However, before everything is approved, the Legislative Audit and Review Commission of Virginia will have to conduct a couple of studies which are related to possible impacts on society and economy that casinos could have in this state. The latest findings are expected to be published by November 1, which is the time when the whole thing can move forward.

The Virginia Lottery Board will be the body responsible for rules and regulations in the casinos of this state. They are expected to begin working on the rules by January 1, 2020, and present them by June 30, 2020. A day after that, the board is expected to meet and decide who would get the licenses for building and operating the future casinos of Virginia. When it comes to the taxes proposed by the bill, it seems that Virginia would take 13-15% of the total gambling revenue.

Finally, the bill also introduced the self-exclusion program for the people who show signs of addictive behavior. They will be able to pull themselves away with this program, which would help them overcome their problem.

One could argue that Virginia is very close to hosting a couple of casinos, but there are these extra steps that need to be taken so that they can be completely approved by everyone. However, it seems that this time they are about to succeed in their effort.  Having casinos in the state is sure to boost the economy and attract many new people, which will help the tourism market.  There’s no set timeline for when the potential new casinos might be open for business, but there’s sure to be a push to get them built quickly so that the state can begin capitalizing on them.