Developers to pitch casino, racetrack for Wareham
A Quincy-based development group appears set to unveil plans for a casino and horse-racing complex in Wareham on Tuesday.
Press events are scheduled for Quincy in the morning and, in the afternoon, at what would appear to be the Glen Charlie Road site of the proposed project.
Representatives of the Notos Group LLC, which appears to have been formed to pursue the Wareham project, are set to meet with selectmen on Tuesday evening. The project plans are the only item on the board’s agenda.
While the specifics of the project were not released in advance, officials with some knowledge of the plans provided preliminary information this week.
According to Selectmen Chair Patrick Tropeano, a casino, a racetrack, and an accompanying sports complex would be constructed on Glen Charlie Road land currently owned by Graziano Redi-Mix, a gravel and concrete products company. The land abuts Route 25.
The proposal is scheduled to be presented to the Board of Selectmen at 7 p.m. Tuesday in room 320 of the Multi-Service Center at 48 Marion Rd. While the meeting will be open to the public, it is not a public hearing and will include no time for public questions and comments.
Tropeano said he didn’t know much about the project, but said the sports component would include a field for the Wareham Gatemen to use during their summer baseball season.
“I’ve got an open mind to it,” Tropeano said of the overall project. He noted that there would be a long approval process, including licensing by the state.
Selectmen Peter Teitelbaum said that the land would need to be rezoned, which would require approval at Town Meeting by two-thirds of voters. Currently, the land is zoned residential, although a gravel operation is run on the property.
Teitelbaum also said that the developers would be looking for a new on/off ramp from Route 25 so visitors would not have to drive down Glen Charlie Road.
Presenting the plans on Tuesday will be Thomas P. O’Connell, who is listed as the authorizing officer of Notos Group, LLC. O’Connell was previously involved with building the Granite Links Golf Club and the Marina Bay complex, which includes condos, apartments, an assisted living facility, restaurants, and a marina. Both developments are located in Quincy.
Notos Group, LLC. is registered with the Secretary of State’s office as a lobbyist group working on “legislative and regulatory matters relating to thoroughbred racing and ancillary uses.” It registered with the state on March 4, 2019.
Massachusetts law allows for three casinos in the state, one in each of three regions. The other two regions already have casinos: Encore Boston Harbor in Everett, which opened on June 23, and the MGM Springfield in Springfield.
The state’s Expanded Gaming Act also created one license for a slots-only facility with no table games. That license is held by Plainridge Park Casino in Plainville.
The law also sets out a variety of criteria that developers of a proposed casino must meet: a minimum licensing fee of $85 million, a capital investment of at least $500 million, and inclusion of a hotel.
Developers must also sign a host community agreement, which can include a community impact fee.
The state receives 25 percent of the gross gaming revenues at any casino.
Horse-racing is also licensed by the Gaming Commission.
The Tuesday, August 20, meeting can also be watched live on WCTV, on Comcast 95 or Verizon 29, or online at www.warehamtv.org.