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Friday, May 1, 2020

Churchill Downs Shares Details on Historical Horse Racing Facility in Newport

Rendering of planned Newport Extension project, a simulcast and historical horse racing facility coming to Newport Shopping Plaza. Target timeline is the fourth quarter of this year.

by Robin Gee

The planned historical horse racing (HHR) facility coming to Newport Shopping Center was approved by the Churchill Downs Inc (CDI) Board of Directors in mid-April. The $38.4 million project known as the Newport Extension is part of the overall development and renovation project underway for Turfway Park, and is considered an extension of its gaming license.

The Newport Extension project will run during the Turfway renovation and will help provide funding for the future Turfway Park live race meets.

To-go drinks and slushies. Grab one today. Midway Cafe Fort Thomas. 1017 S. Fort Thomas Ave. 
CDI will lease 46,500 square feet of space for the Newport project that will include a simulcast area with a separate VIP simulcast room, a 17,000 squre foot gaming floor with 500 historical horse racing machines and a feature bar. The company estimates about 70 full-time-equivalent jobs will be created.

RELATED: Newport Shopping Center to be Site of New Horse Racing Facility owned by Churchill Downs

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission approved the company’s plan in March. Jane Richards of Louisville-based RunSwitch PR, said it is now undergoing an extensive review process as part of that approval. At the same March meeting, the Commission adopted proposed regulation changes that would clear the way for the facility to stay open even after renovations at Turfway Park are complete, she said.

"Those changes are in the midst of the ordinary review process, and we hope to see them permanently adopted later this year," Richards explained.

"Ultimately, the addition of the historical racing machines at Derby City Gaming, Churchill Downs Racetrack, Turfway Park, its Newport Extension and Oak Grove will significantly increase jobs and tax revenues in the Commonwealth, increase the purse money for the horses that race at our racetracks, attract more money to be wagered on our races...and increase the value of thoroughbreds for breeding purposes, which is all good for the Kentucky horse industry as well as for the Commonwealth of Kentucky," she said.

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