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Photo: Ellison Bronze Photography
Photo: Ellison Bronze Photography

Resorts World Casino in South Ozone Park is looking to hit the jackpot as it plans to spend $400 million to build a new hotel and convention complex while adding 1,000 new video-lottery terminals (VLTs).

According to The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the proposal aims to add a 400-room hotel, 20,000-square-foot spa and resort, and a minimum of 140,000 square feet of convention and meeting space. Additional room for food, retail and casino expansion have also been proposed.

“The Aqueduct is the right place and Resorts Casino is the right partner to bring in jobs to the community and much-needed economic resources,” said Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder, who is based out of Howard Beach.

The plan would expand Resorts World operations at Aqueduct Racetrack by 750,000 square feet.

On June 27, Resorts World Casino President Ryan Eller, discussed the proposal with the New York state Franchise Oversight Board. Eller expects the new complex to be opened in April 2019.   

A spokesman for Resorts World told the WSJ that the multimillion-dollar expansion would be built on a parking lot on the west side of the casino. The expansion is currently awaiting approval from the state Franchise Oversight Board.

The additional video-lottery terminals would add to the 4,500 electronic gambling machines already in operation on Resorts World grounds. While a percentage of the existing revenue from VLTs is allocated to the New York Racing Association — which operates thoroughbred racing at Aqueduct, Belmont Park and Saratoga — some of the revenue from the new VLTs will be provided to the Nassau Regional Off-Track Betting (OTB) Corporation.

Nassau OTB had proposed building a VLT casino of its own at Belmont Park, but abandoned its plan after the state approved the 1,000 new VLTs at Resorts World through legislation passed this year. Nassau County is expecting to receive a minimum of $9 million in revenue from the added machines in their first year of operation, a spokesman for Norma Gonsalves, presiding officer of the Nassau County Legislator, told the WSJ. Each year after, Nassau County could receive up to $25 million, he told WSJ.

Other portions of revenue generated from the electronic gambling terminals would go to the support horse racing and breeding and the state education fund.

“Resorts World is already the biggest contributor to this fund in all of New York state, illustrating the popularity of the gaming facilities at this location and how expanding the opportunity to play and experience the new amenities would only lead to more crucial dollars for state education and revenue,” Senator Joseph P. Addabbo Jr. said in a press release issued Wednesday.


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joe July 07, 2016 / 06:50AM
No, this is not good news for the community at large. Good news for crooked elected officials who are involved in this and which will put money in their pocket, but face it, since this casino was put here from the get go, the community did not benefit from it at all, it is still ghetto crap and none of the surrounding businesses have benefited nor have the residents. The community never saw big job growth for the residents at all. In a Wall Street article (, Queens A-hole Borough President of low morals, Melinda Katz hadn’t yet reviewed the project proposal, but a spokeswoman in her office said, “Anything that comes to this property should be to the direct benefit of Queens residents in the form of good jobs and economic growth.” Really, so if it was an illegal auto body shop or a massage "whore house" parlor, that would be good. I mean what the f**k kind of answer is that. The kind of answer that a-hole, clueless, not in touch with the community/residents elected official's give, that is is the kind. As one resident of that area and reader of my blog stated: I definitely think it'll help the Jamaica tourism image that they are trying to create, but it's not going to benefit any of us living in the community or any of the small businesses on Rockaway Blvd. Just the pawn shops and massage parlors will benefit. If any of these hack elected officials think it will be good, then it is NOT.

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