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New Entertainment Venue Planned At Nationals Park Could Be Another Sportsbook

The left field gate entrance to Nationals Park

After Capitals and Wizards owner Ted Leonsis unveiled plans for a sportsbook at Capital One Arena in March, another D.C. sports franchise appears to have a similar idea. 

The Washington Nationals received approval from Events D.C., the District's convention and sports authority that owns Nationals Park, to build a 35K SF restaurant and entertainment venue at Nationals Park, the Washington Business Journal reports

The plans for the venue include a bar, a lounge area and a screen wall, plus a performance area and a rooftop terrace. 

Nationals ownership has expressed interest in the sportsbook concept following the D.C. Council's February passage of a law to legalize sports betting. The law carved out a special license for the city's sports venues that would cost $250K over five years.

Nationals owner Mark Lerner, also a principal of development firm Lerner Enterprises, told WTOP in March the team had hired architects and was preparing a sportsbook concept. 

His comments came days after Leonsis unveiled plans to open a sportsbook in the former Greene Turtle space at Capital One arena. Leonsis had also first introduced general plans for a new business concept in the space before confirming it would be a sportsbook three weeks later. 

The D.C. Council still must approve the Nationals Park facility. Events D.C. has committed to invest $3.6M to develop the space. The agency agreed to build 46K SF of retail, services or cultural space along with the stadium in the original zoning order, but it has only built 11K SF up to now.