Earlier this week, the Danville City Council approved a casino entertainment zoning district for the city. With the approval, Caesars Entertainment will be able to continue moving forward with a planned casino project in the Virginia city. The operator has plans to spend $400 million to create a gambling resort in the former location of the Dan River Mills industrial complex.
Changes to the City Code
To be able to approve the entertainment district, the Council members had to change the Danville City Code. Chapter 41 now outlines the zoning district and what its permitted uses are. There are options for special permits as well as lot size requirements, parking details, lighting, landscaping, etc.
The casino entertainment district must take up at least 75 acres of land. The minimum lot area must be 25 acres. The building height must be 250 feet and no higher. Any buildings that are created at more than 200 feet high will need to be set away from non-building structures by 100 feet or more.
The City Council choose Caesars Entertainment last year to be the developer for the new casino resort. The Las Vegas-style venue will offer a new type of entertainment for the region that will bring in jobs as well as new revenues to the city.
During the City Council meeting on Tuesday, officials of Caesars stated they were happy to be welcomed in Danville and were thankful to have been chosen as the city’s operator. Senior Vice President for the company, Robert Livingston, said that Caesars has started the conceptual design phase for the future resort. The goal is to see the permitting process completed by November and then the construction portion starts in December.
It is expected that the hiring process will begin during the last quarter of 2022. The construction phase should be completed by the second or third quarter of the following year. The tentative opening date is in late 2023, either the third or fourth quarter, depending on how the development process goes.
The new casino resort will be home to 2,000 slot games along with 75 table games. For poker fans, the property will include 16 tables. A sportsbook will also be located on-site. Anyone wishing to stay overnight will find a new hotel with 300 guest rooms. The hotel will also be home to a conference center and live entertainment venue.
The company expects to hire 900 employees during the construction phase and an additional 1,300 full-time employees once the casino is up and running. There are still requirements that must be fulfilled for the project to move forward. Caesars must meet the decibel limit for outside noise which is set at 70 from 9 am until midnight.
From midnight to 9 am, the property cannot exceed 50 decibels. The company must also include a landscape buffer in the design. A 25-foot buffer is required to help ease the noise for residential districts that are located nearby.
On June 7, the Danville Planning Commission will host a public hearing on the site rezoning. An additional hearing should be made in July for the planned rezoning to be finalized.