On Election Day 2020, the city’s voters made it official: Caesars Casino Resort Danville is coming to Danville.
After a casino referendum passed by a comfortable 61-39 margin, the Danville City Council and its preferred casino partner, Caesars Entertainment, will move forward on the project: Caesars Virginia.
The Virginia Lottery will publish final casino regulations by April 2021, after which Caesars can formally apply for a license. Based on projected timelines, officials expect a Caesars Virginia groundbreaking in the fall of 2021 with an opening in the second half of 2023.
Officials have laid out a timeline for the opening of the $400 million Caesars Virginia resort in the southern Virginia city of Danville.
Roughly 70% of the voters supported the proposed Caesars Casino in Danville, which means the Virginia city will soon have a new tourist attraction.
Caesars Virginia, a $400 million hotel and resort, will be built on an 85-acre site formerly known as the Dan River Mills industrial complex in Schoolfield.
According to Caesars officials, the resort will feature, among other attractions:
The Caesars Virginia site sits along the banks of the Dan River on West Main Street in the central part of the city. It’s currently recognized as a national historic district. However, the complex, which was once the largest textile facility in the South, has been mostly vacant since 2006.
Caesars officials plan to design the resort with aesthetics from the once-thriving Dan Rivers Mill, including its smokestacks, red bricks and overall industrial design.
Nov. 3, 2020: Danville residents overwhelmingly vote in favor of a casino referendum and formally approve the Caesars Virginia project.
Sept. 2, 2020: The Danville City Council formally approves and unanimously votes to support the casino development agreement with Caesars Entertainment.
Aug. 12, 2020: Caesars Entertainment announces “Caesars For Danville,” a formal referendum campaign and committee to bring casino gambling to the city. Co-chairs include Danville Mayor Alonzo Jones, Del. Danny Marshall (R-Danville), Averett University President Tiffany Franks, and project investor Tammy Wright-Warren.
June 2, 2020: The Danville City Council voted unanimously to name Caesars Entertainment as its preferred casino partner. The vote also included the recommendation to notify the Virginia Lottery of the city’s choice.
May 18, 2020: The City of Danville made the official announcement that they are in negotiations with Caesars Entertainment, chosen from a number of outstanding bids, with regards to opening a casino resort for the city.
Jan. 13, 2020: A deadline is set for Request for Proposals (RFP) to become the city’s preferred casino partner.
Dec 2, 2019: The city issues a formal RFP to companies interested in operating a casino in Danville.
Nov. 3: General election
Early December: Danville casino election results certified by the Secretary of State
April 2021: Caesars officials can apply for its casino operator license
Fall 2021: Officials break ground on Caesars Virginia
Second half of 2023: Caesars Virginia opens to the public
The positive implications for the City of Danville are significant.
The initial capital investment for the site would be $400 million. Initially, 900 construction jobs would be created while developing the former textile mill complex. Once opened, the operation of the casino resort would generate 1,300 permanent positions.
This resort has the potential to revitalize and reinvigorate the City of Danville, its economy, as well as the stability and progress of the community.
The City Council stated that the average salary from these jobs would range from $35,000 to $47,000 annually.
The city stands to benefit from $20 million in annual revenue from gaming taxes and various gaming-related revenue.
Furthermore, an additional $4 million would be generated by annual taxes from commodities such as:
The leaders of the City of Danville have stated that they will use the annual revenues from the resort for a number of crucial investments that will encourage further growth and opportunities in the community.
Danville voters formally approved the Caesars Virginia casino referendum on Nov. 3, 2020. The Secretary of State must certify the election results, but officials are comfortably moving forward with the project.
With the safe assumption that the Virginia Lottery will approve its casino operator license, Caesars Virginia is expected to break ground in the fall of 2021, and the resort is expected to open to the public in the second half of 2023.
Visitors of Caesars Virginia in Danville will likely see games similar to those found at other Caesars properties. The most popular of those games include slot machines, various types of table games, and poker.
Caesars officials plan to open a sportsbook on the property upon its opening.