Southern Brooklyn

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver Eyes Coney Island For Casino Destination

Source: Jamie Adams via Wikimedia Commons

Borough President Marty Markowitz wants a casino to be built in Coney Island. Now, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver may also be eyeing the People’s Playground for a new casino.

Silver hopes for a location that is a “destination resort area,” according to the New York Daily News. He is also considering Willets Point near Citi Field. Both are preferable, he said, to the Aquaduct.

“[A casino] would bring jobs and revenue to potential locations in New York City, especially Coney Island, which is a natural,” Markowitz said earlier this year.

Though a constitutional amendment to legalize casino gambling and authorize up to seven casinos in New York State has been passed, Governer Cuomo is not expected to decide on locations until next year.

Other officials including Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz, have spoken out with some concerns about  bringing gambling to the area.

“While we might be looking at an economic engine that could generate over a billion dollars annually for the state, thousands of new jobs and increased recreational venues for New Yorkers, we are also looking at a substantial increase in problem gambling,” Cymbrowitz said.

Cymbrowitz states that if a casino comes to the area, funding must also go to expansion of treatment prograor gambling addicts.

There is no guarantee just yet as other locations may present a viable alternative, and local leaders would have to agree on the location of the new casino.

In a December 2011 poll, Sheepshead Bites readers indicated strong support for expanding access to casinos in New York State. Just over 38 percent of poll respondents gave an unconditional “Yes” to the question of legalizing gambling, while another 34 percent said yes, but with strict oversight and increased funding for gambling addiction programs. Almost 21 percent said no to legalization or to adding more exceptions, while six percent said no to legalization, but that current allowances should be increased.

Comment policy


  1. Bring back OTB!!!!!!!!!!!!  We don’t need or want casino’s here. Bloomberg ruined OTB. If he hadn’t been Mayor again, we would still probably have OTB here.
    But when you are Emperor BLOOMBERG and can change the rule  of a TWO year term,
    you can ruin anything.  He really did a number on the Board of Ed too.  I am sure there are other things he ruined too.

  2. Cymbrowitz states that if a casino comes to the area, funding must also go to expansion of treatment prograor gambling addicts.

    Legalize narcotic use as long as you bring in more State
    funded drug rehabs

    Legalize domestic abuse as long as you have more State
    funded Domestic therapists

    Legalize speeding as long as you have more State funded traffic
    safety instructors

    Legalize gambling as long as you have more State funded

  3.  Why do you think Cuomo is waiting until next year to make an announcement? Reelection in 2014, maybe? Look for casino approval in low Cuomo voting areas.

  4. A correction – In order to amend the NYS constitution to allow casino gambling, the legislature must vote its approval in two consecutive legislative sessions.  Then the change must be approved by the voters of NY in a referendum.  So far the legislature has voted once.  Casino gambling has not yet been approved in NYS.     

  5. I’m in favor of it as a way of continuing the revitalization of Coney Island.  As long as the casinos don’t replace the amusements. Let casinos replace the empty land, the bus depots, which belong anywhere but on prime oceanfront real estate.

  6. Soon enough Coney Island will once again reign supreme in kicking Atlantic City’s butt… but now when that happens it might really put AC out of business… You’re an 45 minutes to an hour out of Manhattan… Can you say Tourist Central? 


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