News and notes from Reston (tm).

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Always Bet on Russet Brown: Could Reston Get a Casino? (Updated)

V. v. exciting news for those with more money than basic working knowledge of probability: Apparently two Northern Virginia lawmakers snuck a last-minute proposal into the current General Assembly session that, if approved, would allow casinos in very specific parts of Northern Virginia. Give us some one-armed-bandit blockquote, BFFs at Reston Patch:
Virginia Sen. David Marsden (D-Burke) and Del. Wren Williams (R-Stuart) introduced legislation on Friday that could make casinos a reality along Metro's Silver Line in Reston. Language in Marsden's bill narrows the location of a "casino gaming establishment" to "within one quarter of a mile an existing station on the Metro Silver Line, (ii) part of a coordinated mixed-use project development, (iii) outside the Dulles airport flight path, and (iv) outside the Interstate 495 Beltway."

Sounds like (v) Reston! And so, unfortunately, does this:

Marsden, who chairs the Senate finance subcommittee on economic development and natural resources, told the Business Journal that he was approached by developers with properties that would fit the type of development being proposed.  


Anyhoo! Instead of wondering what dispiriting, open-space threatening proposals with sweeeeeeeet tax revenue to help sway otherwise open-space favoring local officials might be coming down the pike, let's think about what some exciting games of chance might look like in our plastic fantastic planned community. Fun!

Roulette: In keeping with DRB regulations, red and black numbers are replaced by Russet Brown and Harvest Gold. 

Mauvejack: Don't go over 21. Don't use white stone or red mulch. 

Baccarat: Sure it's confusing, but no more so than figuring out how to buy a pool pass.

Texas Hold 'Em: Beats the donuts of the same name.

Slots: Gotta do something with all that change now that the Toll Road is going cashless. But the minimum payment begins at $11 and will increase every few years.

Craps: For once, not what you get if you take a dip in one of Reston's lakes.

Sportsbook: Will your 4th grader's soccer team beat the spread? Maybe, if you hide the opposing team's halftime oranges and juice boxes! Ruthless? Sure, but we're guessing there won't be much local golf to bet on if this proposal goes through, if you get our drift and we think you do, the end.

Although this issue has not been discussed by the Board of Supervisors, the idea of using the most valuable commercial and residential real estate in the region on a casino strikes me as foolhardy. In my decades exploring and building plans and consensus on transit-oriented development in the Dulles corridor this was not the type of development or “community” anyone ever brought up. This is a bad idea on multiple levels (including the emerging concepts around equity in land use) but I am confident our excellent delegation in Richmond will do the right thing.

Update to the Update: The "excellent delegation in Richmond" did just that. Give us some legislative blockquote, BFFs at Reston Patch:

A last-minute bill submitted by State Sen. David Marsden (D-Burke) that would've paved the way for casinos to be built within a mile of Silver Line Metro Stations in Fairfax County was killed in committee on Wednesday afternoon.

At Marsden's request, the General Laws and Technology Committee voted unanimously (15-0) to have the bill stricken... Marsden was approached by developers with properties that would fit the type of development being proposed. 

“It’s just too rushed, and so I’m probably going to have to talk to the individuals who approached me about it,” Marsden told Business Journal, declining to name them
It's a shame Silver Line gambling is now CANCELED, because we'd bet good money on who those individuals might have been, the end.


  1. What's the over/under on the U-11's?

  2. Viva Las Vienna!

  3. That lasted about as long as your money in a casino.

  4. I suggest Marsden have his casino built in his own Burke community, not dump this sewer elsewhere in Fairfax County.


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