Woodbine Entertainment Group, the owning company of Mohawk Racetrack in Ontario, revealed its plans to expand the racetrack into a full-blown casino. The Group’s CEO, Jim Lawson, has already said that residents in Milton liked the idea of having more gambling options on the slots floor that currently offers 850 machines.
Back in July, Mohawk’s sister track near Pearson Airport, got the approval from the Toronto City Council to expand into a full casino. This expansion should include additional 2,000 electronic gaming machines and 300 tables to the 3,000 machines that are currently available to players. Once the project is over, the casino will be operated by a company chosen by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation.
Lawson said that Woodbine Entertainment was hoping to duplicate the same idea at the Mohawk and the OLG still hasn’t made any comments regarding those plans. Nevertheless, the executive expressed strong optimism that the expansion would eventually become reality.
Lawson explained that land-based gaming at racetracks “is successful today in a very fast-growing area such as Milton with good access and very willing municipality.” He pointed out that one of the main problems that OLG encountered was not having willing municipalities, which was not the case in Milton.
According to the CEO, casino expansion at Mohawk would be critical to the sustainability of horse racing on Canada’s largest circuit. Even though the racetrack doesn’t get direct revenue from the slot machines, it does get paid for leasing the gaming floor to the province.