Proposed Track for Dayton
The residents of Dayton are excited about Penn National Gaming’s proposal to construct a horse racing track in the town. Even though the residents are already sold on the idea, it will be up to the Ohio Racing Commission to accept the proposal. Penn National Gaming to close down the track in Columbus, Beulah Racecourse, if their proposal for Dayton is approved. Dayton locals see the pending racecourse as an income generating opportunity for their community, and are supporting the proposal one hundred percent.
Moving their thoroughbred racecourse to Dayton, would require Penn National Gaming to invest $200 million into the project. They have already scouted an ideal location on Needmore Road, which used to be the site of the Delphi Corporation Automotive Plant. This location is a hundred and twenty-five acres, which is ample space for the racecourse and the facilities it would need to operate. The track would also include video lottery terminals, which would provide another lucrative income for Dayton. The construction of the racecourse, stables, grandstands and other buildings would instantly provide approximately a thousand jobs for locals, which will boost the community and the economy. Once the racetrack is completed, it is estimated that more than one thousand five hundred jobs will be created. The installation of video lottery machines does still hang in the balance, however, as the decision to install them in the State’s racecourses was challenged and has not been addressed again, thus no final decision has been reached. Governor Ted Strickland and his legislators are still questioning if the Ohio Lottery Commission could run the VLT’s successfully and therefore this debate is ongoing.
The decision with regard to the new racetrack should be made this week, as the proposal is currently before the Ohio Racing Commission for review. A press conference will be held to confirm the decisions made and everyone in Dayton is hoping for a favorable outcome. If Beulah Racecourse were to move, Scioto Downs would be the only remaining racecourse in Central Ohio. Opposition to the proposal is expected from Lebanon Raceway.