It’s still in the bidding phase but we can certainly see it become a reality: according to an official press release, Roc Nation, the entertainment agency founded by JAY-Z in 2008, will be the official entertainment partner of SL Green, the largest owner of office properties in New York, and Caesars Entertainment in their bid for a new, state-of-the-art gaming facility to open at 1515 Broadway by Seventh Avenue in Times Square.
The would-be casino’s proposed name? Caesars Palace Times Square, of course.
“New York is a beacon, the epicenter of culture. We have the opportunity to create a destination at the heart of Times Square, the true crossroads of the world,” said Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter said in an official statement pegged to the news. “My partnership with SL Green and Caesars, this coalition, has all the promise and commitment to economic opportunity, growth and enrichment for the community, and everyone who visits the Empire State.”
Hoping to provide billions in tax revenue to the city and the state while also accelerating our much-sought-after economic recovery through strategic partnerships with local businesses, Caesars Palace Times Square will make use of the company’s Caesars Rewards program in specific by allowing members to use credits at Broadway shows, for example, or top restaurants, other entertainment venues, retail stores, hotels and comedy clubs—effectively driving traffic and revenue across a variety of businesses in the area.
Specifically, the partners hope to catalyze over 7 million new net visits to Times Square annually, more than 600,000 new overnight visits to local hotels, $166 million new in retail spending, 7 million new meals for local restaurants and over $65 million in novel annual Broadway ticket sales, supporting 500 theater district jobs.
Those are hefty goals indeed, but if there’s one superstar entrepreneur who can probably get it done, it’s JAY-Z.
Of course, the project could either turn Times Square into an even bigger nightmare than it already is for locals or, perhaps, breathe a new sense of life and purpose throughout the entire neighborhood.
As odd the idea of a casino smack-dab in the middle of New York sounds, this latest endeavor is not the only one of its kind currently in development. Back in April, New York Mets team owner Steve Cohen introduced the idea of City Field’s parking lot turning into a casino as well.
Will New York become the next Las Vegas? We’ll have to wait and see.
Ex-Brit turned Manhattan resident since 2008.