New York City Here I Come, Right Back Where I Started From

Genting New York; A rendering showing renovation plans for the Aqueduct race track.

Not long ago I celebrated the increase in regional gaming coverage and the entry of the national press into the gaming arena; in that blog I opined that it was the result of self interest; that is, as gaming has spread into other jurisdictions it became an important local story.  With the national press, the sheer number of states with or considering gaming,  gaming’s impact on those states’ economy and the presence on Wall Street of some really big gaming companies brought about the changes in coverage and attitude toward gaming.  The New York Times is one of the national media outlets, its coverage is generally trends, finance and occasionally some local story of organized crime and gambling.

Now the Times has a reason to be both national and local in its gaming coverage – it seems almost certain this time around with Aqueduct race track that New York is going to get its own casino.  The New York Times story was positive and upbeat, nothing like the negative anti-gaming stories that once graced its pages. Do you think a casino in New York City will succeed?  Try these numbers 1.5 million within 5 miles – Boyd’s model in Las Vegas 25 years ago was 25-50 thousand within 5 miles for a successful local casino; 5.6 million within 10 miles, that is walking distance.

Genting, the apparent winning bidder for the license (in the end there was only one qualified bidder according the state of New York)  is willing to pay almost $400 million up front and estimates it will generate $1.5 million a day in tax revenue with its 4700 slot machines.  Genting hopes to get tables games at some point too; they are experienced casino operators with plenty of cash money and looking for opportunities in the United States besides this one. The last casino Genting opened was in Singapore and it generated $380 million in cash the last quarter – damn, enough to pay New York. What a country!


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August 2010
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