Work to start on Resorts World Hudson Valley in New York State

Genting Group-owned hospitality and casino brand Resorts World has announced that construction of its planned video lottery casino in the Newburgh Mall in Orange County, New York is expected to start this summer and could open in early 2022.

The new 90,000 square foot gambling hall, the location of which was disclosed in early February, is to be open 20 hours a day and will reportedly offer 1,300 electronic games and employ as many as 225 people.

Necessary approvals:

Resorts World Hudson Valley got the green light from the town of Newburgh Planning Board on June 3, after a week prior the seven-member board approved the agreement between Monticello Raceway Management and Resorts World Hudson Valley while also unanimously accepting the State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) on allowing video lottery terminals in shopping centers. A zoning change that will allow the $32 million electronic gaming casino in the mall was also approved, giving a nod to the only other 7BALL local authorization needed by the casino operator, according to Times Herald-Record.

The New York-based company has agreed to make annual host benefits payments of $3 million to the town of Newburgh, the lion’s share of which to counterbalance policing costs or other expenses caused by the casino.

Area revitalization:

In a written statement on Friday, Vice President, Government Affairs and Public Relations for Genting Americas Inc. (member of the Genting Group), Meghan Taylor, reportedly thanked Newburgh’s town board and the local community for their “ongoing support” for the project.

“We look forward to breaking ground soon and delivering on our commitment to create good-paying union jobs for local residents, help revitalize the Newburgh Mall, serve as an economic engine in the Hudson Valley, and begin generating revenue for New York State’s public schools,” Taylor said.

Planned construction:

Resorts World puts the construction effort for renovation of the former Bon-Ton department store at six to 12 months, depending on possible delays due to pandemic-related shortages of building materials. Some 200 construction workers are expected to have a hand in overhauling the space in the mall located on Route 300 approximately 44 miles from its $1 billion sister property in Sullivan County that opened in 2018.

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The operator has projected $160 million in gross gaming revenue will be generated by the video-lottery terminals (VLTs) at its Newburgh property. Part of the proceeds will go to the state for education funding. According to the source, as host city for the electronic gambling machines, Newburgh looks to collect approximately $780,000 a year in state aid, in addition to the payments Resorts World will make, while about $450,000 a year will go to Orange County.

Enabling measures:

Legislation sponsored by state Sen. James Skoufis (D-Hudson Valley) was passed in June 2019 allowing VLTs from gaming operations at Monticello Raceway in neighboring Sullivan County, which ceased on April 22, 2019, to be relocated to Orange County. The devices were removed after Resorts World Catskills opened and drew gamblers away from the six-plus decades-old harness racing track. When gaming operations ended, Monticello Raceway reportedly had 1,100 VLTs, which it had hosted since 2004.

Originally set for the former Nepera Chemical plant in the village of Harriman, the plans for the project fell through after an environmental review of the land showed that it was more contaminated than was previously thought and would not be buildable for nearly a decade.