The New York City Planning Commission proposes to amend the zoning laws. The process would last seven months, after which potential casino projects would be allowed to go forward in the city’s five boroughs.
Under the proposal, gambling facilities would only be allowed in certain municipal districts – commercial and industrial. But it would require approval from community boards, the offices of the presidents of specific neighborhoods and the Planning Commission itself. The New York City Council would then make the final verdict.
Dan Garodnick, Director of the Department of City Planning (DCP), commented on the initiative. As the state considers proposals to build casinos downstate, it is important that we create a level playing field for applicants in New York City. Then they can compete for this opportunity, he stated. Garodnick added that the amendment will avoid duplication of strictthe state licensing process while at the same time providing a rational basis for discussion.
New York State is still in the process of reviewing applications for three casino licenses. If the amendments pass, potential casinos in the areas envisioned by the new rules will only need approval from the state and its Community Advisory Committee. The lengthy single land use review process for each application will no longer be required.
The new zoning rules will play into the hands of operators competing for casino licenses. Among them are Thor Equities’ application in Coney Island, Brooklyn, and a joint proposal by SL Green Realty, Roc Nation and Caesars Entertainment in Times Square. However, projects such as a casino near Citi Field in Queens or Bally’s in the Bronx could face other hurdles. Approval of these applications requires a permit to build gambling properties in parkland.
Meanwhile, in Vietnam, the Vietnamese prThey propose to build a $2.2 billion casino resort.