Caesars taps Whiting-Turner for $500M Virginia casino

Dive Brief:

  • Caesars Entertainment has tapped Baltimore-based Whiting-Turner as the general contractor for a $500 million, 500-room casino hotel project in Danville, Virginia, the Reno, Nevada-based gaming company announced.
  • Whiting-Turner has a history of constructing hospitality and casino projects, having built Horseshoe Baltimore and worked on Caesars Palace Las Vegas, as well as LINQ Hotel + Experience Las Vegas and Harvey’s Lake Tahoe.
  • The announcement of the GC selection came nearly four months after the Danville City Council said they hoped to select a builder. The project is anticipated to create 900 construction jobs in the area. 

Dive Insight:

Site work on the project has begun, with a goal of opening in the second half of 2023. The new casino will include, according to the release:

  • A World Series of Poker room.
  • 40,000 square feet of meeting and convention space.
  • An entertainment venue that can hold 2,500 guests.
  • Restaurants and bars.
  • A spa.
  • A pool.
  • A fitness center.

The project follows initiatives from fall of 2020 to expand casino gambling in Virginia, even as COVID-19 slowed entertainment-focused projects in most of the country. Several cities in the state voted to advance plans for casino projects, Danville among them.

Whiting-Turner, which ranked fifth on ENR’s Top 400 contractors in 2021, declined to comment on the project.

Virginia is just one example of jurisdictions that are betting on new casinos as a way to boost revenue. In New York City, Times Square shut down during the pandemic and Broadway theaters sat empty for months. Now, the hotel union there is lobbying for new casinos, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Office developer SL Green Realty Corp. wants to build a casino near Times Square, according to the Journal. The state is set to approve up to three casino licenses for the city, as developers have pitched a number of locations.

New York state currently has a ban on new casinos through 2023, but Gov. Kathy Hochul wants to change that, the Journal article said, as casinos mean more jobs and tax revenue.

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