Long Island, New York's Islandia Village Board recently voted 5-0 in support of Jake's 58 Casino Hotel's $200 million expansion project. The board engaged local leaders, Suffolk Off Track Betting Corporation's (the project developer) executives, and residents on August 1 in a two-hour public hearing session. Then, its members later voted for the project unanimously.
The board gave several people an opportunity to give their opinions about the casino project. Besides, some residents opposed the plan.
Still, this didn't influence the board to turn down Jake's 58 Casino's expansion request. The casino's management intends to double their video lottery gaming terminals to 2,000, renovate hotel rooms and add over 100 parking spaces.
This shows that the casino has been performing well of late. Reports state that it is the most successful gaming operator in New York since its February 2017 launch. The New York Gaming Commission shows that Jake's 58 Casino makes $350 million monthly on average.
Suffolk OTB and Islandia Benefit from the Casino
The gaming property has earned steady revenue for Suffolk OTB and helped it avoid going bankrupt in 2020 during the Coronavirus pandemic. Also, the village of Islandia will get $47 million from Delaware North (Jake's 58's previous owner) and Suffolk OTB in more than two decades.
Other reports state that Jake's 58 Casino Hotel generated over $1 billion in gross revenue between May and July, raking in $350 million a month on average. It channeled almost $31 million to New York's public education fund.
Phil Boyle, Suffolk OTB's President, told Patch, a local media company, that they were pleased by the Islandia Village Board and Mayor Allan Dorman's approval. He stated that they have collaborated with them for a long period, and Jake's 58 Casino's expansion project will strengthen their relationship.
Problem Gambling Concerns in Islandia
The casino's expansion project will boost Islandia's economy. But, it is raising problem gambling issues. Pamela Brenner-Davis from the Problem Gambling Resource Center's Uniondale Office stated she believes the casino's expansion will increase the number of calls the service receives within two years.
The gaming operator's gambling terminals and other local casinos have a toll-free hotline, and they advertise the program. Dorman proposed a pedestrian bridge rather than Soffolk, elevating speed bumps and pedestrian crosswalks. He added that the issues couldn't justify the Islandia Village Board blocking Jake's 58 Casino's expansion plan.
Boyle stated that Suffolk might have to adjust its expansion plan to ensure that it fully addresses the Islandia community's concerns. Its new design features an 800-foot insulated sound barrier that will contain elevated noise on its premises.
Jake's 58 will construct 110,000 square feet building behind the casino. Also, it will increase parking spaces to almost 2,000.
The new gaming property will have 500 machines and 1,000 gambling terminals. Suffolk OTB revealed that both buildings will have bars and restaurants.