Gov. Beshear: New Tourism Development Project to Bring Jobs, Horse Racing and Entertainment to Southeast Kentucky

Cumberland Mint facility to bring 180 full-time and more than 50 part-time jobs to Corbin-Williamsburg community

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Oct. 19, 2021) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear joined community leaders to celebrate the official groundbreaking of a new horse racing facility that is projected to create 213 full-time jobs for the Corbin-Williamsburg community.

“Kentucky is the undisputed horse capital of the world, with a long and rich history here in the commonwealth. Today’s announcement shows the best days for horse racing and tourism in our state are still ahead of us,” Gov. Beshear said. “Cumberland Mint is bringing expanded investment and jobs to Southeastern Kentucky, ensuring that the amazing economic momentum we are seeing is reaching every corner of our commonwealth.”

Expanding the commonwealth’s iconic horse racing industry to Southeastern Kentucky, the joint venture between Keeneland and Kentucky Downs – ECL Corbin LLC – unveiled plans for a new horse racing, gaming and entertainment facility in the Williamsburg community. The new project, Cumberland Mint, represents a $90 million investment into the commonwealth’s booming tourism and horse racing economy.

“We are thrilled to continue our investment in the commonwealth and build off the model at Kentucky Downs to grow the racing product for all breeds, and we are appreciative of the community embracing this project and look forward to the positive impact to the region,” said ECL Corbin LLC partner Ron Winchell.

The new Cumberland Mint racing facility will feature two different locations in Southeastern Kentucky, approximately 15 miles apart. The Williamsburg facility will be located 13 miles from the Tennessee border, allowing for frequent visitation from out-of-state travelers. The facility in Corbin will break ground later this year.

As part of the commonwealth’s ongoing effort to support tourism in Kentucky, the company has requested a tax incentive package totaling $27 million. Through the Tourism Development Act, eligible Kentucky businesses can receive an annual reimbursement for taxes paid on qualifying tourism development projects. The new facility will enhance the community’s tourism industry and offer new job opportunities for Kentuckians.

Sen. Robert Stivers, who represents the district, attended the groundbreaking to welcome the new horse racing facility to the Corbin-Williamsburg community.

The project represents a joint venture between Kentucky Downs and Keeneland. The $90 million investment project will ensure the commonwealth’s legendary horse racing industry generates economic value for the local community.

“Keeneland continues to fulfill its mission to strengthen Kentucky’s vital horse industry and to positively impact the commonwealth and those communities in which we operate,” Keeneland President and CEO Shannon Arvin said. “Along with our partners at Kentucky Downs, we are excited to make this project a reality – one that will generate significant economic growth, enhance tourism and create new jobs for the region. Our thanks to Gov. Beshear and Sen. Stivers, along with local leadership, for their strong support of horse racing.”

Tourism is an $8.9 billion industry in Kentucky. Together, Knox and Whitley counties generated an economic impact of more than $102 million for their communities in 2020. The commonwealth has approved seven tourism development projects totaling $7.4 billion in investment in 2021.

Detailed community profiles for Knox and Whitely Counties can be viewed at Information about Whitley and Knox County tourism is available at

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