The city of Dumfries in Virginia could be getting a new casino resort soon, provided there are no last-minute surprises. A request by Colonial Downs Group Inc. to build a gaming property in the city has received approval from the Dumfries Planning Commission, jumping one of the few remaining hurdles toward becoming a reality. If everything goes well from this point forward, an old landfill could start being converted into a casino sometime during the second quarter of next year.
The Rose Comes to Dumfries
They say a rose by any other name smells just as sweet, but Colonial Downs’ Rose casino would be built on repurposed land connected to the Potomac Landfill. 93.5 acres of the site would need to be rezoned for the project to move forward and the Dumfries Planning Commission unanimously supported the idea when they met this past Monday. The landfill and the casino operator entered an agreement this past February to section off 100 acres of the site so Colonial Downs could purchase it, but the commission still needed to approve zoning changes before the project could move forward.
Colonial Downs already has one smaller gaming property in the city. It owns Rosie’s Gaming Emporium, which opened earlier this year. The company is also behind the Colonial Downs Racetrack in New Kent County, VA, which offers thoroughbred and harness racing, as well as historical horse racing slot machines. In addition, it is behind four other gaming properties in Virginia.
Colonial Downs Has Big Plans
The new Dumfries resort, if approved, will be built at a cost of $389 million. It will offer 50,000 square feet of gaming space, a sports bar with room for more than 250 bettors, eight more bars and restaurants, 200 hotel rooms, a 1,500-seat theater and an event space spanning 7,000 square feet. It needs a conditional-use permit for the resort to proceed and, with the approval by the Dumfries Planning Commission, it can move forward with the purchase of the land, propelling the project forward.
The land purchase isn’t the final step, however, and doesn’t mean that Colonial Downs will be able to realize its new dream. The Dumfries Town Council still has to weigh in on the subject and will hold a public hearing on the plan on September 21. If the council signs off on the resort, Colonial Downs will have enough optimism to finalize the land grab, which is expected to take place in the first quarter of next year. While no definitive timeframe for the development has been offered, it’s possible that groundbreaking could be held before next summer.