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NEW YORK CITY-King City, Ontario-based racing and wagering property developer and operator TrackPower, Inc. has signed a lease with an option to buy the former Tioga Downs Race Track, currently known as Tioga Park. The 138-acre property is located outside of Binghamton, NY in the Tioga County town of Nichols.

The facility includes a five-eighths mile track, a grand stand with seating for 3,100 patrons, 14 horse barns, a jockey quarters building, horse auction facility, and various other buildings necessary to operate a harness racing facility. There is also stabling for over 600 horses. The property is owned by Jim Hawkins, who also owns a mobile home dealership in the Broome County community of Harpersville. Details of the lease agreement have not been released.

Previously operated as a quarter horse track, the park has served as a concert facility and venue for other public events including the New York State Republican Committee’s convention. A spokesperson from the Tioga County Tourism Office tells GlobeSt.com that the horse barns are currently serving as vendors stalls for a flea market that has been held on the property for the last five years

The racetrack is currently not licensed, however TrackPower says it plans to submit a license application to the New York State Racing and Wagering Board immediately for a harness racing meet for 2003.

The property is currently zoned to allow for further commercial development and a significant portion is currently underdeveloped. A capital improvement program is planned for the facility.

While the Tioga project is TrackPower’s maiden venture, chairman and CEO John Simmonds says the firm plans to acquire and develop racing venues throughout North America. “Tioga Downs represents an exciting opportunity for TrackPower,” Simmonds says. “Once fully operational, the facility will represent a significant first phase of asset acquisition, development and an operation designed to increase shareholder value. The demographics for the facility are excellent. There are nearly a half million people living within 30 miles and nearly 2 million living within 100 miles of the location.

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