Plans for casino, racetrack unveiled
The Quincy-based development partnership Notos Group, LLC, unveiled plans for a casino, horse-racing track, and sports facility called Wareham Park at an event in Quincy on Tuesday morning.
The project would be located on a 275-acre parcel of land on Glen Charlie Road in East Wareham, which abuts Route 25.
Wareham Park would include a permanent one-mile track for thoroughbred racing, a gaming and entertainment facility that would include electronic gaming, restaurants, and entertainment venues, a hotel, a new ballpark for the Wareham Gatemen, and a sports field complex.
The group projects a number of economic benefits for the area, including $5 million in annual revenue for the town, more than 1,000 permanent jobs, more than 1,000 construction jobs, and the revival of the horse-racing industry.
The plan, however, would require state legislators to change the state’s 2011 Expanded Gaming Act. Currently, the only license available is for a full casino, which includes table games and slots and requires a $500 million capital investment. Wareham Park would not include table games, and the group is looking to make only a $300 million investment as part of a plan described as “a gaming facility that reflects current market realities.”
The plan already has local supporters, as quoted in a press release.
Thomas Gay, the president of the Wareham Gatemen, is in favor of the new ballpark.
“We have a long history in Wareham and believe that a new stadium will allow us to better meet the needs of our players and the community,” Gay said, adding that the new stadium would enhance fans’ experience and could attract tournaments and other events to the town.
“This project has the potential to be a game changer for Wareham,” said Richard Swenson, a member of the Wareham Redevelopment Authority and the Planning Board. “Done properly, it could establish our town as a destination as opposed to a gateway to the Cape.”
Swenson said that he is “committed to working closely with the developers, the town’s leadership, and Wareham citizens to ensure that this project maximizes all potential benefits to residents of Wareham.”
Thomas P. O’Connell, the developer heading the project, emphasized the economic benefits the project could bring to Wareham and the South Coast.
“Our offer is to develop a sustainable, diversified economic development project that delivers the benefits promised to Southeastern Massachusetts under the casino gaming law while at the same time creating a welcoming sports and entertainment venue for both local residents and tourists, and their families,” said O’Connell.
To learn more about the proposed project and see renderings of the plans, go to www.warehampark.com.
The plans will be further discussed at a press event at 3 p.m. at the proposed site on Glen Charlie Road, and at tonight’s Board of Selectmen meeting at 7 p.m. 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.
The Selectmen’s meeting can also be watched live on WCTV, on Comcast 95 or Verizon 29, or online at www.warehamtv.org.