Norfolk Casino Project Gets Land Purchase Extension until 2025

The Pamunkey Indian Tribe has decided to exercise its option to delay the purchase of land adjacent to Harbor Park for their proposed HeadWaters Resort and Casino until January 2025. 

Norfolk Casino Project Receives Extension for Meticulous Planning

City spokesperson Chris Jones confirmed the extension, emphasizing that it does not indicate a definite delay in the project but rather allows additional time for meticulous planning and approval processes, reported The Virginian Pilot. The Pamunkey Tribe, in partnership with Golden Eagle Consulting II, aims to construct the HeadWaters Resort and Casino between the baseball stadium and the Amtrak station near downtown Norfolk, Virginia.

Originally securing a three-year option in January 2020, the tribe utilized its first extension last year, setting the final contracted deadline for land purchase at nearly $10 million. There are specific benchmarks outlined in the contract related to licensing and contracting that the tribe must fulfill before the city approves the sale.

Jay Smith, a spokesperson for HeadWaters, stated that they anticipated offering additional updates in the coming weeks. He mentioned that these updates would highlight the tribe’s steadfast dedication to initiating the project’s construction promptly. The aim is to generate employment opportunities and tax revenue, meeting the expectations of both the City of Norfolk and the Commonwealth of Virginia, from their proposed destination resort and casino.

City Leaders Challenge Two-Phase Plan, Insist on Original Agreements for Norfolk Casino

The casino project has faced hurdles, including disagreements over the construction approach. Initially proposing a temporary casino while the permanent structure was built, developers later opted for a two-phase plan.&nbsp ph646 ;

However, city leaders expressed their opposition to this approach, insisting on a single-phase project to align with the original agreements and voter expectations. Accusations have been made by both sides, with the tribe and developers claiming mixed messages from city officials regarding project expectations.

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Meanwhile, city leaders have demanded clarity and adherence to the promises made to voters during the 2020 referendum, where Norfolk residents overwhelmingly supported casino development.

The city has been keen on ensuring that the proposed resort and casino meet the standards outlined in the initial agreements, emphasizing the importance of delivering the development as envisioned during the public vote.

Virginia experienced a significant surge in tax revenue from sports betting and casinos, surpassing earlier projections. In fiscal year 2023, Virginia’s casino sector exceeded expectations, with the temporary Hard Rock Casino in Bristol generating $157 million in net gambling revenue, Rivers Casino Portsmouth reporting $120 million, and Caesars casino in Danville recording $31 million in just two months. Virginia’s gambling sector is rapidly expanding, with the casino in Norfolk and an upcoming referendum for a casino venture in Richmond.