Mason-Dixon selects Penn National Gaming to develop and manage $75 million resort project

Mason-Dixon selects Penn National Gaming to develop and manage $75 million resort project

Mason-Dixon Resort & Casino announced today that it has selected a subsidiary of Penn National Gaming Inc. (Nasdaq: PENN) to develop and manage all resort and gaming operations in connection with the company’s Category 3 resort license application filed with the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.  Mason-Dixon Resort & Casino plans to develop a world-class Category 3 venue in southern Adams County, about two miles from the Maryland border.

Situated in Cumberland Township at what is currently the Eisenhower Hotel and Conference Center and Allstar Funland, the planned $75 million Mason-Dixon Resort & Casino will feature a first-class hotel with more than 300 guest rooms, 20,000 square feet of meeting and exposition space, and ample parking.  The casino will include 600 of the most popular slot machines, table games, live entertainment, and a variety of exciting casual and fine dining restaurants, along with other resort amenities.

Penn National Gaming has committed to provide the financing needed for the development, construction and opening of the project.  This would enable the project, upon licensing, to begin the renovation process immediately.

Overall, Penn National Gaming owns and operates 19 gaming operations in 15 jurisdictions, including its successful Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course in East Hanover Township, Dauphin County, which opened in 2008.

Penn National also owns other facilities in the region, including Charles Town Races & Slots in Charles Town, W.Va., and the company plans to open the first video lottery terminal facility in the state of Maryland in Cecil County in the fourth quarter of 2010.

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“Penn National is one of the nation’s most active and successful developers and operators of gaming and lodging properties and pari-mutuel facilities,” said Mason-Dixon co-principal David LeVan.  “In Pennsylvania, the company has developed a successful state-of-the-art casino in Grantville, which has proven to be a strong driver of economic activity in the region, including the employment of a large number of Pennsylvania residents.” 

“This project will benefit from Penn National’s proven property-development skills and operating disciplines, which will support our goal of creating a world-class resort,” LeVan said.  “The development of Mason-Dixon’s Adams County resort will provide meaningful economic benefits to the region, including construction, full-time employment and new tax revenues while creating an important new tourist destination in the Gettysburg area.  We look forward to continuing our work with local and state authorities to develop a distinctive entertainment resort hotel.”

“Penn National looks forward to working with Mason-Dixon Resort & Casino and playing a vital role in this important economic-development project,” said John V. Finamore, Senior Vice President Regional Operations of Penn National Gaming.  “We believe the location of this facility can drive additional daytime and overnight tourism in the area and help stimulate the local economy.”

In recent weeks, Mason-Dixon unveiled two key studies on economic impact and traffic.  An economic-impact report concluded the resort would create nearly 900 permanent direct and indirect jobs, $16 million in annual wages, and nearly $3 million in annual local taxes.  The report, commissioned by Mason-Dixon and conducted by Econsult, also reveals $66 million will be invested into the Adams County economy each year, and its proximity to the Maryland marketplace will help generate about $37 million in annual state tax revenues.

Since Emmitsburg Road already was built to handle a resort, the traffic report concluded that minimal work is needed on Emmitsburg Road to accommodate the proposed new facility.  The report, commissioned by Mason-Dixon and conducted by York-based Transportation Resource Group (TRG), recommends a signal light and northbound right-turn lane be added to the entrance intersection of Mason-Dixon.  Mason-Dixon intends to assume the costs of the recommended changes.