[toc]Three new commercial casino resorts in New York are either open or close to doing so. That means even more regional competition for New Jersey and Atlantic City casinos.
Here come the NY casinos
There eventually will be four commercial casino resorts in New York:
- Tioga Downs opened late last year.
- del Lago opened this week.
- Rivers Schenectady opens Feb. 8.
- Montreign opens next year.
All of them will eventually have hotels and become places where people from across the Mid-Atlantic region might choose to go with their gaming dollars. Given the proximity to New York City for some of these resorts, one would imagine they will be a draw that will take some amount of traffic away from AC.
New Jersey shot down a way to better compete in gambling
Some people in New Jersey know that the state — or rather AC — is having trouble competing in the regional casino market because there are lots of options.
While AC used to be the only game in town, there are casinos — some of the destination variety with hotels — across the Eastern seaboard. Beyond the casino expansion in New York, that includes Pennsylvania and Maryland in close proximity to New Jersey. The MGM National Harbor opened near DC recently.
The state has been forward-thinking in legalizing NJ online casinos, but it has not been as up to speed on the land-based side of things.
New Jersey had a referendum on the possibility of authorizing casinos in the northern part of the state, to help position NJ to better compete in the region. But the effort failed miserably. New York casino interests played no small role in the effort to strike down the ballot measure. Many also believed that it would simply make things worse for AC.
What’s next for NJ casinos?
North Jersey casinos seem like a pipe dream, at this point. Even if public sentiment could be changed on building casinos outside of AC, it would be years till such a casino could be built.
In the meantime, the NJ casino market has found some equilibrium, as revenue ticked up on an annual basis for the first time in a decade in 2016 (thanks to online gambling).
Will it be able to continue that trend, or will new options in Maryland and New York continue to erode AC’s land-based casino marketshare?