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  • Dave Williams | Staff Writer - Atlanta Business

Atlanta Business Chronicle Front Page Story

Horse racing backers unveil plan for huge project

A group of Georgia horse racing enthusiasts has hired Kansas City, Mo.-based Populous, architects of the new Braves stadium, to design a racetrack that would serve as the focal point for a huge new metro Atlanta mixed-use development.

The $500 million to $750 million complex would contain hotel, office, retail and residential components, while an infield park could host a variety of events on non-racing days.

Supporters of a proposed constitutional amendment to legalize pari-mutuel betting on horse racing are counting on the ambitious project to help sell the measure to a thus-far reluctant General Assembly and, subsequently, to Georgia voters in a statewide referendum.

“It’s more than just a racetrack or pari-mutuel wagering,” said state Sen.Brandon Beach, R-Alpharetta, who introduced an “enabling” bill into the Senate Jan. 12 spelling out how legalized horse racing would work. “It’s job creation, and it’s sustainable.”

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