- Delaware North hopes to take their case directly to Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos. (Skeptical Skelos, I was going to write, but it's a bit too cutesy for my taste). No doubt in reaction to the reaction to its selection, Delaware North says that its plans are more ambitious than people think. That's probably because those extra ambitions are not spelled out in their proposal.
Delaware North officials said Monday that while the company submitted no additional plans, it intends to ultimately build a "world-class, four-star conference center and hotel facility."This is a far cry from their original announcement last spring, when nothing more than a "large parking deck" was in the plans. The article linked to above claims that some 20,000 people are expected to visit the racino daily; and it's not an exaggeration to point out that that's around ten times a normal weekday racing crowd. Hope they're saving some space for the flea market.
In June, the firm hired The Peebles Corp., said to be the country's largest African-American real estate development company specializing in urban redevelopment.
Chairman and CEO Donahue Peebles said he is designing plans that would include a 3,000-seat theater for concerts and boxing. There would also be a 60,000-square-foot conference and meeting facility with a ballroom, a 5,000-square-foot spa and a 2,000-space garage.
In addition, Peebles said, there would be 15,000 square feet of "boutique retail" along the entrance to the racino - with more once the hotel is built. [NY Daily News]
- Seems as if Delaware North was merely following instructions. Looking back at an account of the submission of the bids last May, company president William Bissett told the Times Union that state officials encouraged Delaware North to focus on the up-front fee, rather than long-term return. There's some forward-thinking for you. Delaware North must have been either the only company who listened, or the only one who got that advice.