Suffolk: Casino Worth $40M in Racing Upgrades
by Tom LaMarra
Date Posted: 10/22/2013 4:52:16 PM
Last Updated: 10/23/2013 9:33:42 AM

Just days after asking its casino partner to resign in the wake of an investigation by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, Suffolk Downs said it will unveil a $40 million "racing improvement plan" at a local horse farm Oct. 24.
 
A media advisory said the track, which is still in the running for the Boston-area destination casino license, plans clubhouse and grandstand renovations, enhancements to outdoor viewing areas, new dormitories, and upgrades to the barn area, new dirt and turf courses, and "state-of-the-art technology" tied to presentation of Thoroughbred racing.
 
Suffolk Downs cited a study that contends the Thoroughbred industry in Massachusetts would derive a 57% jump in economic benefits should the track win a casino license.
 
The plan will be introduced at Indian Rock Stables in Saugus. Track officials and horsemen representatives will attend, according to the advisory.
 
Suffolk Downs Oct. 18 asked Caesars Entertainment to abandon its partnership to build a $1 billion casino resort at the track. The MGC has not yet revealed the results of its background check into Caesars, an international gaming and entertainment company.
 
On Oct. 16 Suffolk Downs chief operating officer Chip Tuttle, during a MGC forum on horse racing, said the track plans to apply for 2014 racing dates. The New England Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, however, indicated the uncertainty of a meet should Suffolk Downs not get the casino license in early 2014 has made it difficult to attract horsemen to Massachusetts.
 
The media advisory said the $40 million racing improvement plan is tied to the overall casino development plan. Local residents in early November will vote on whether to approve a casino at Suffolk Downs.
 
Tuttle, when contacted Oct. 22, said the racing improvement plan has been part of the overall redevelopment plan for Suffolk Downs for some time.


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