HAYDOCY PLANS “UPSCALE RV RESORT” NEXT TO HOLLYWOOD CASINO COLUMBUS

Owner of Haydocy Airstream & RV plans a 20-acre park with 135 RV spaces, clubhouse and fitness center between his dealership and casino on the West side

A hotel next to Hollywood Casino Columbus may still be years away, but visitors will soon get another option for staying next door to the West Side casino.

The owner of Haydocy Airstream & RV plans a $6 million “upscale RV resort” on 20 acres between his W. Broad Street dealership and the casino. The park, called Road Adventures Resort, would include a clubhouse with grab-and-go food, a fitness center and a saltwater lagoon. Visitors will be able to park their own RV or rent one from Road Adventures, the RV-rental operation Haydocy launched two years ago.

Shuttle service to and from the casino will be provided, as will bike rentals.

Company president Chris Haydocy has reached a tentative agreement to buy the land from Gaming and Leisure Properties Inc., the real-estate affiliate that spun off from Hollywood Casino parent Penn National Gaming several years ago.

“This will be unlike any other RV park in the Midwest,” said Haydocy. He added that there are a number of other casinos around the country with RV parks next to them, including Rising Star Casino Resort along the Ohio River in Indiana.

The project would benefit from the federal Enterprise 360 Opportunity Zone Fund initiative established in 2017 to encourage investments in specific census zones across the nation. Haydocy said that would bring an estimated $2 million of funding to help offset the $6 million project cost, making it viable for him.

Hollywood Casino spokesman Bob Tenenbaum said there is still ample room for a hotel to be built next to the casino, as has been discussed for years.

“Development of a hotel on the casino property is still part of our long-range planning, but there is no timeline in place at present,” Tenenbaum said in a statement.

The park will feature 135 RV spaces with electric, water and sewer hookups and WiFi, Haydocy said. Charging stations for electric vehicles will be available. Two retention ponds with fountains would remain, and the site would be landscaped with 2,000 new trees to give more privacy and seclusion, he added.

Haydocy is a longtime West side booster who has promoted the casino as an economic engine for the long-depressed neighborhood. He said he’s done studies projecting that the park would attract 50,000 people a year.

In addition to the casino, the park would be next to the Ohio to Erie trail, a bike trail stretching from Cincinnati to Cleveland. Haydocy said he plans to add two elevated-platform structures to the site where cyclists could pay a “nominal fee” to set up their own tent and stay overnight.

Haydocy said zoning is already in place for the project. After completing the land purchase and securing necessary permits from the city, Haydocy hopes to begin work on the park by the middle of 2019 and have it “substantially completed” by the end of the year.

Written by Marla Matzer Rose, for The Columbus Dispatch. 10/26/2018

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