York mini-casino closer to reality after supervisors approve ‘conditional’ plans

York

YORK, Pa. (WHTM) – Supervisors in Springettsbury Township are betting on a mini-casino to bring much-needed revenue and redevelopment to that part of York County.

Supervisors voted unanimously Thursday to accept what are called “conditional use plans” that developers are proposing for the York Galleria, where the casino, if granted a license, will go.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board still has to approve Penn National’s license to operate the mini-casino, but this is a small step in the process.

Not everyone in the township is on board.

“That mall is a ghost town. Why can’t we have something that everyone can enjoy?” said resident Kathleen Kupchinsky, who’s worried what a casino might bring. “The traffic’s gonna be bad, and then they’re drinking and that sort of thing. I just don’t think that’s good.”

Developers shared plans Thursday for the 83,000 square-foot casino. Parking on the property’s west side will change and a driveway to the front door will be added. Multiple intersections around the mall will be streamlined, including one at Whiteford Road that has been a problem for years, all to accommodate more cars.

Developers said the building itself will stay intact, with the only demolition being inside the building.

It’s all part of a redevelopment supervisors want to see.

“We have seen the mall suffer some challenges with the loss of three anchor stores,” said Supervisor Charles Wurster.

“With increasing vacancy on the interior, this is a new, unique redevelopment opportunity that has been presented to Springettsbury Township,” said Wurster.

Developers also want to install several large Hollywood Casino signs around the mall property, explaining the signs are needed for directional and advertising purposes.

But one township business owner says when he’s tried to get proper signs for his auto shop, he’s had trouble. He wants Penn National, the developer, to be held to the same standard.

“And yet, what has been presented by the casino is a rampant run on getting all the signs they want,” said Louie Lease.

The mini-casino could employ an estimated 200 full-time employees and bring in potential tax revenue of $1 million every year.

The next big step here is getting that state license to operate. Developers hope to be up and running by the end of 2020.

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