Congratulations to the Colonial Downs team, who had a ceremonial ground breaking at their newest Rosie’s Gaming Emporium site in Hampton Monday morning (February 11th).
The 40,000 square foot facility is in the Power Plant complex, directly across I-64 from the former Colonial Downs OTB. 700 historical horse racing machines along with an OTB area will be featured in the section of buildings where the former Nascar Sports Grill was located. Projected opening is this September.
Approximately 200 employees will be hired to staff the Rosie’s site at an average salary of $40,000 plus benefits. The project is estimated to generate approximately $10 million in taxes annually, and $2 million will go to the City of Hampton.
“Rosies’s should attract one million visitors annually to the Hampton site and a lot of those will come from outside the city,” said Aaron Gomes, COO of the Colonial Downs Group. That comment drew applause from city leaders, local politicians and invited guests. “That should be music to the City Council’s ears,” added Gomes. “Rosie’s will provide a safe, exciting and fun way to spend an evening.”
Linda Curtis, a Hampton Councilwoman, echoed those comments. “This project will generate tax revenue, create jobs and provide entertainment for visitors.”
Jeb Hannum, Executive Director of the Virginia Equine Alliance (VEA), said the VEA has worked with the Colonial Downs group for a year and said they are smart, civic minded and have been a pleasure to deal with.
John Marshall, Colonial Downs GM, said he has received calls from prominent industry leaders from around the country and they are all rooting for Colonial’s success. He said it is one of the biggest movements in racing. “It’s an honor and a pleasure to be a steward for horse racing in Virginia,” said Marshall. “Get ready for the biggest Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Virginia Derby parties in Hampton Roads next year!”
Three other Rosie’s facilities are already in the construction process. The New Kent and Vinton sites are expected to open in late April while the Richmond site will open in June. Live thoroughbred racing will return to the New Kent track August 8th and continue thru September 7th. The Virginia Derby is slated for Saturday August 31st.