VA Legalized Gambling. So Dumfries Transformed a Landfill Into a Casino
Along with the opening of Rosie’s Gaming Emporium in Dumfries this past January, gaming in Northern Virginia counties continues its expansion with the addition of “The Rose” Gaming Facility and Hotel by 2023.
The development project, which was unanimously approved by the Dumfries Planning Commission, preceded another approval by the Dumfries Town Council on September 21, 2021, which will swap out the Potomac Landfill for an 80-acre public park, hotel accommodations, gaming establishments, restaurants, and cultural arts spaces.
“The public park is one of the biggest components of phase one. The design charrettes allow us to get additional public input on what people want to the park space to be. Some initial feedback we’ve gotten thus far is that people are looking for active recreational uses to be included,” says Keith Rogers Jr., town manager for the Town of Dumfries.
“This is a major project for Dumfries, and the first of its kind for Colonial Downs in Virginia. The Rose eliminates a public pain point, the local landfill, and replaces it with an entertainment destination. This is a comprehensive development that will serve as an asset not only for Dumfries but the entire Northern Virginia region. The local revenues generated will more than double our operating budget, which is unprecedented for a locality. All these benefits allow us to provide excellent service to our residents – which is what we are here to do,” Rogers says.
The project is estimated to bring $10.9 million in annual tax revenue to Dumfries, $6.7 million in annual tax revenue to Prince William County, and create 640 new jobs, continues the press release.
The second phase of the project, tentatively slated for a 2025 or 2026 opening, will add more hotel rooms, restaurants, retail, and a live theater to the 2023 expansion that continues the development from Rosie’s Gaming Emporium.
Right now, Rosie’s Gaming Emporium is operated by Colonial Downs LLC and is located in the Triangle Shopping Plaza, among other locations across the state. The focus of the gaming entertainment space is its 150 historical horse-racing betting machines. With the approval of The Rose, there will be a larger gaming facility, replacing the current facility with a workforce development facility for their employees.
In a press release, Aaron Gomes, chief operating officer of Colonial Downs Group, said, “Rosie’s has enjoyed an extremely successful partnership with the Town of Dumfries and its residents. We look forward to expanding on that partnership with The Rose. We are proud to be bringing more great jobs, important tax revenues and a terrific new entertainment destination to Dumfries.”
Following the approval of The Rose development project, Mayor Derrick Wood said in a press release, “Tonight’s vote is historic because this is the single largest investment made in this 1.5 square mile town in its history. We are Destination Dumfries!”