Queens residents and legislators flocked to Resorts World New York City Casino last week for the unveiling of two new gambling facilities in South Ozone Park that they said will be an economic engine in the borough.
“They’ve created 1,300 jobs here, which is a good thing,” said Rob MacKay, director of public relations at Queens Economic Development Corporation. “It’ll bring tourism to Queens. The Sheraton LaGuardia East in Flushing is already working out deals to bring clients back and forth to the casino.”
RWNYC opened its doors to the public to the Fifth Avenue and Crockfords casinos last Friday.
The Fifth Avenue establishment, located on the floor above the Times Square venue, features 2,240 video lottery terminals and 270 electronic table games.
It will also include a Chinese restaurant, steak house and bar.
The Crockfords Casino is for VIP guests by invitation only and will include a private entrance, 64 video lottery terminals, 14 electronic table games and a lounge.
The Central Park event space is located on the third floor.
“We’re all very happy with regard to the economic boom to the neighborhood,” said Frank Gulluscio, a community leader in Howard Beach.
Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder agreed with Gulluscio and emphasized the need for jobs in southern Queens.
While some residents have voiced concerns about the traffic congestion and potential crime stemming from the casino, residents and legislators said RWNYC has worked with civic leaders and city officials to deter problems.
“They seem to have everything in place,” said Frank Dardani, president of the 106th Precinct Community Council. “The head of security is all over the place every time I walk in here.”
Woodside resident Regina Weiss tested her luck at the Fifth Avenue Casino on Friday —and while she didn’t win much, she said she enjoys coming to the establishment a couple times a week.
“I’m happy because it’s a lot closer to home than Atlantic City,” Weiss said. “Now you can go somewhere to gamble without having to travel for hours. It’s a great thing.”