Bristol Mall Gets New Life As Home To Future Hard Rock Casino

Posted on November 10, 2020

East Tennessee residents will soon have a new casino just across the border in Bristol, Virginia.

Bristol Hard Rock Casino comes to fruition

Among the casino’s opponents are four Virginia churches, who recently dispersed an eight-page anti-gambling booklet to Bristol residents.

Preliminary results revealed more than 65% of each city’s voters were in favor.

State legislation sanctioned Richmond as the fifth permissible location, though it will not be put to a vote until next year.

Bristol tax revenue initiatives

The city of Bristol will collect more than $16 million in forecasted annual tax revenue from this endeavor.

Income will go to local police and fire departments, school systems and debt reduction initiatives.

School construction projects do not currently receive a state-funded allotment. This lack of city and state tax revenue has been a struggle previously.

Accordingly, Gov. Ralph Northam ensured this current legislation allocates for school builds on a state-wide level.

Bristol school superintendent Keith Perrigan hopes this will lead to increased pay and benefits for teachers, as well as upgraded supplies and equipment for students.

Moving forward with a new casino

The Hard Rock Bristol Hotel and Casino is becoming a reality for area bettors.

Projected to open within 18 months, the Bristol Mall’s former Sears storefront will be the casino’s permanent home.

In the meantime, sights are set on a temporary casino inside the old Belk location. Bristol vice-mayor Anthony Farnum anticipates ribbon cutting on this initial establishment could happen in as little as six to nine months.

The international Hard Rock chain is a proven catalyst for growing disenfranchised communities into gambling meccas.

East Tennesseans can double down on Bristol, Virginia following suit.

Photo by Dreamstime
Alec Cunningham Avatar
Written by
Alec Cunningham

As a college athlete, Alec Cunningham played Division II golf at Tusculum University. She graduated in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Professional Writing. She then returned to her love of written word in 2000 after working in the music industry as a concert promoter, tour manager and artist developer. As a journalist, she's covered a variety of topics and currently specializes in Tennessee online sports betting and Virginia casino news. She served as a panelist at this year's All American Sports Betting Summit, discussing the ever-evolving role of women in the gambling industry.

View all posts by Alec Cunningham