Proposed casino would create ‘landmark’ along the Beltway

Here\'s a look at where the proposed casino would be located. (Courtesy of Michael A. Reilly/Edelman)

OXON HILL, Md. – Developers say a proposed casino and resort at National Harbor would create a striking new landmark along the Capital Beltway.

“We have a 400-foot height limitation here, so from where we’re standing, their hotel will go up another 17 stories,” says Jon Peterson, standing on a 20-acre parcel of land that looks down onto the Potomac River and the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

Peterson is a senior vice president at the Peterson Cos., which has developed National Harbor and is partnering with MGM on its casino proposal.

“You’ll be able to see this for miles and miles,” he says of the building.

“It’s going to be a beacon.”

But the new complex won’t disturb the existing “downtown” section of National Harbor. Peterson calls the casino and resort “another nucleus” of the area that is “going to be pretty self-contained.”

He says walking paths and shuttles will connect the different destinations, including the Tanger Outlets, but for many people the areas will be “just out of walkable.”

Friday is the deadline for casino proposals to be submitted for Prince George’s County, but a decision is not expected until December.

“Once the license is granted … then I think we’re in a whole different ball game,” Peterson says.

He envisions further development of the area as uncertainty about the casino is removed from the equation: “Anything from hotel, timeshare, restaurant, retail, entertainment.”

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