Nicole Antonucci/Recorder staff Casino supporters gathered in the city's downtown Thursday for the "Say Yes to Exit 27 Casino" rally. Holding signs that read "Yes Casino", supporters stood in front of the bus shelter at the corner of Main and Church Streets, shouting to passing traffic, which honked in support of the effort. This is the first successful rally for the casino supporters whose two other scheduled rallies were cut short by heat and rain.
By NICOLE ANTONUCCI
The state Gaming Facility Location Board has released the executive summaries for each of the 17 applicants seeking to develop and operate a gaming facility in New York State.
In the Capital Region, five applicants are vying for one of four gaming licenses that will be awarded by the board in the fall.
Applications were submitted on June 30 and while each one is proposing to provide an economic boost to the region, how they plan on doing is what sets them apart from the competition.
* Unnamed Project (Florida Acquisition Corp.), Montgomery County
Clairvest Group Inc. and Great Canadian Gaming Corp. are partnering together to build a $250 million project on a 512-acre parcel straddling the town of Florida and the city of Amsterdam off Thruway Exit 27.
The project includes a casino, 100-room hotel, 140-seat restaurant, 300-seat buffet, 150-seat food court, 200-seat live entertainment facility and 3,000 square feet of meeting space. There will also be 300 residential units and two golf courses on the site along with a day space, business center, fitness facility and a farmers market.
"The building design is simple yet elegant. It responds to the rural surroundings but more to the rolling hills and beautiful site it is founded on. The uses of wood and timber elements along the public edges of the facility make a direct connection with the park-like grassy hills and treed landscape of the site," the application states.
The applicant is working with Montgomery County to find a savings to offset the cost of the $50 million licensing fee. A $25 million deferment was rejected by the state's Facility Location Board. Once a solution is found, Clairvest expects to add to its application to be fully compliant within the next 60 days.
Clairvest Group Inc. Investment Broker Peter Marcil said Tuesday that no updates were made to the application as of yet.
* Howe Caves Resort and Casino, Cobleskill
Michigan-based developer Michael Malik Sr. and operator Full House Resorts is proposing a $450 million Howe Caves Resort and Casino on approximately 110 acres of the Howe Caverns site in Cobleskill.
The project involves a casino and a 254-room hotel with three full-service restaurants, banquet facilities and pool and spa. There is also a proposed 55,000 square foot state-of-the-art indoor waterpark, a 1.25-acre outdoor seasonal waterpark, 250-room family hotel, arcade and entertainment park, and three full-service restaurants.
The project is expected to create 3,000 construction jobs and 1,700 permanent jobs. In its first of operation, the developer estimates that the casino and hotel will generate $158 million with $131 million in gross gaming revenues. The waterpark is estimated to generate $23 million.
"We have 330-acres of shovel ready land which put us in a position to be quick to market," Ryan Moses, a spokesman for Howe Caverns, said. "Schoharie County has struggled economically and in the wake of Hurricanes Irene and Lee have struggled even more. We feel this is an opportunity to really help this region.
* Rivers Casino and Resort at Mohawk Harbor, Schenectady
Rush Street Gaming and Galesi Group is proposing a $300 million Rivers Casino and Resort on approximately 60-acres of the former American Locomotive Company (ALCO) site along Schenectady's waterfront. The project features a 50,000 square-foot gaming floor casino with a steakhouse, marketplace, entertainment lounge, banquet facility and day spa. A 150-room hotel is also included.
The project is estimated to generate $223 million in third-year gaming revenues, $82 million in gaming taxes and fees and $50 million in annual payroll, benefits and tips.
"It is a distressed area -- the jobs alone will be transformative and will recast the future of this historic iconic upstate New York area," the application states adding that it is the only site connecting to a major urban downtown.
"Rivers Casino and Resort will draw consumers into the city, generating a steady life for other city businesses and become a catalyst for additional urban economic development."
* Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Rensselaer
Hard Rock Entertainment and Global Gaming Consultinsg is proposing a $280 million Hard Rock Hotel and Casino at De Laet's Landing in Rensselaer. The proposal includes a casino with an off-track-betting outlet. a 100 -room hotel with a indoor/outdoor pool, fitness center and meeting space, a 250-seat restaurant and a retail outlet.
The casino is expected to make $260 million in annual gaming revenue and create 1,638 direct and indirect jobs.
"The Gaming facility's location on the Hudson River across from downtown Albany will provide for unmatched visibility while achieving the city of Rensselaer's goal of revitalizing its waterfront," the application states.
* Capital View Casino and Resort, East Greenbush
Churchill Downs and Saratoga Harness Racing, Inc. is proposing a casino and hotel project in East Greenbush. The casino will feature a 70,000 square-foot gaming floor with 1,506 slot machines and 56 table games. The project includes a 100-room hotel, 500-seat event center and a high-end steakhouse.
The casino is projected to provide $5.7 million each year to East Greenbush and $9.35 million in annual property taxes to the town and Rensselaer County.
"We have every intention of building a destination resort that will define the area and be the catalyst that drives economic activity and additional business throughout the region," the developer states in the application. "This project represent a tide that will raise all boats in the capital region."
For additional information on each of the casino proposals visit http://www.gaming.ny.gov/gaming/casinos.php