This year, New York state will be issuing gaming licenses. Two will go to already existing properties, the Resorts World Aqueduct and MGM’s Empire City Casino. The remaining license is up for grabs and it will allow a casino to be created in the New York City area. This is prime real estate and many big-name gaming companies want the license. Reports this week indicate that Wynn Resorts, the Las Vegas Sands, and Bally’s are among contenders.
Proposals to Come Soon
This week, the New York Post reported that the three major gaming companies want to be considered for casino gaming in New York City. Proposals can be presented by next month, so we should begin to see by April what each operator has in mind, such as how much they plan to spend and what they plan to offer.
In speaking with the NY Post, Robert Goldstein, the CEO and chairman of the Las Vegas Sands, it was revealed that the company is eager to bring its resources and expertise to the state. Goldstein pointed out that a casino in NYC would bring in revenues as well as jobs that are much-needed after the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Goldstein has been publicly discussing the company’s interest in operating a casino in the area since a January conference call. However, after the company sold its Vegas properties last week, many were wondering if this was a signal that the Las Vegas Sands was leaving the US to focus on Asia.
However, they are interested in NYC and the company has also shown interest in Texas where casinos may be legalized soon. It seems the company may be building funds to be able to construct new casinos in blossoming markets.
Both Wynn Resorts and Bally’s have yet to comment on a casino in the Empire State. We will most likely have to look out for proposals when it comes to these two companies.
New York State Casino Growth
In New York, casinos first became an option in 2013 when a constitutional amendment authorized seven venues in the state. Upstate casinos were allowed first, with four venues in operation. A moratorium was put in place so that the four upstate venues could be established first before three casinos were added downstate.
The moratorium is supposed to expire in two years. However, there are some lawmakers who want to see the process sped up. If a recent budget plan by Governor Andrew Cuomo is approved, casino proposals would start next month, and the casino licenses handed out by this fall.
Of course, two of the licenses will go to existing facilities so they will be able to expand on service options. For the new casino, there are several locations under consideration. Willets Point, Belmont Park, and St. George on Staten Island are all being reviewed.
Based on what the state decides to allow, a new casino could cost from $2 billion to $4 billion. The property will include a casino and hotel and possibly convention space.