Batavia Downs held a ribbon cutting on Thursday for phase one of its $27 million expansion project.
The newly renovated gaming facility is now on the first floor and has new restaurants including pro football Hall-of-Famer Thurman Thomas's sports bar, 34 Rush.
"I remember it was in a state of disrepair. The roof was falling in and its survival was in question. Here we are today with a lot of hard work, a lot of foresight and a lot of money to make sure gaming Stays alive here in Batavia and Genesee County," said state Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer, R-61st District.
"Western Regional Off Track Betting is owned entirely by 15 counties in Western New York and the cities of Rochester and Buffalo. Every single penny that we drive for revenue goes back to those communities, so by being able to put on a better product here that drives more revenue for our municipalities," said Michael Kane, CEO of Western Regional Off Track Betting.
The facility had a soft opening two weeks ago. The rest of the Downs expansion is expected to be completed within a year.