Atlantic City Beer Garden Work Update

There was shoveling and other work going on at the future site of the Boardwalk beer garden in Atlantic City on Wednesday, after weeks of little action. Some demolition work was completed in May, when the project was first approved by the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, which oversees planning in the city’s tourism district. Since then, though, there has been little news about the project that had originally been slated by the owners for a July 4 open. The company behind the project, Dectrinity, already runs the Bungalow beach bar and the Boardwalk bar next door to the proposed beer garden site at the corner with California Avenue. According to the plans, The Biergarten AC will have an outdoor kitchen area, two bars, three fire pits and a game area.

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CRDA, Revel Settle Tourism-District Fee Dispute

The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority and the Revel’s holding company have settled a dispute over unpaid tourism-district fees that led to CRDA filing a lien on the shuttered casino property at the northern end of the Boardwalk in May. Documents filed with the Atlantic County Clerk show the lien tied to the dispute over $64,604.30 in unpaid 2015 Special Improvement District Assessments was discharged on June 30. Reports of a possible sale of the Revel have swirled in the last few weeks. The Press of Atlantic City reported that a $220 million offer for the property was made earlier this month. Revel’s owner Glenn Straub last year leased the property to a group of developers who rebranded it as TEN.

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The Crust View of Atlantic City

“Maybe if people see what’s going on to our f*cking beautiful home, they’ll want to do something about it,” says Erik Klemetti, at the start of an Atlantic City documentary he and friends from the @AtlanticCityCrust Instagram feed have put together. It’s a 40-minute mashup of videos Klemetti and the Crust crew filmed in Atlantic City, including interviews with all of your favorite AC characters. And in amid the chaos and confusion there are some wise words spoken about the Queen of Resorts. We’ve written about Klemetti before. Earlier this year, he set up a GoFundMe page to help out Alex, who was sleeping rough behind an Atlantic City gas station for more than a decade.

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PierAC Will Seek to Draw Locals To Inlet End of Boardwalk

Atlantic City’s Garden Pier, purchased earlier this year by Philadelphia developer Bart Blatstein, will be reopening next month as a locals-focused entertainment venue with live music and a bar area. In the shadow of the still-shuttered mega-casino Revel and not far from Blatstein’s Showboat hotel, the newly renamed PierAC plans to draw Atlantic County residents with a reward-card program and drink specials – plus entertainment.

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PierAC – Probably Not Coming in July

There’s a sign on the locked gate of Garden Pier at the far end of Atlantic City’s Boardwalk. It reads “PierAC – coming July 2017”. The pier’s landscaping is unkempt. Nothing seems to be going on in the way of development.
Property records show Bart Blatstein borrowed millions of dollars backed by his Atlantic City properties at the start of last year. The developer’s purchases since then have not been costly, which would suggest he has money to spend on building and renovation. But Blatstein has been keeping quiet about his plans.

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Double Dutch

There were more than a hundred people gathered in Brown Park on Saturday for a double dutch competition. While kids swarmed the park’s brand-new play equipment, their parents gathered around swishing jump ropes. More than the official ribbon-cutting two weeks ago, this event marked the rebirth of a park that had become synonymous with so many of Atlantic City’s problems.

After a $1.5 million renovation, the park reopened last month and it is now being used by families. Many of the parents in the park on Saturday never played there themselves – Brown Park had that kind of a reputation for over three decades. “We’re 35 years old – no one ever played in Brown’s Park, because of the infestation of drugs and alcohol and violence,” said Indra Owens, co-founder of a girls’ mentoring group called Princess Inc. When Owens and her Princess Inc co-founder Automne Bennett learned the park was being renovated, they got together with managers of the nearby housing developments.

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Water Watch

May 27: That’s the date the state’s designated overseer can start dissolving and “monetizing” Atlantic City’s water system by leasing it or selling it outright to a private corporation. In a speech in April, the executive director of the system, Bruce Ward, who is trying to keep the Municipal Utilities Authority under city control, talked about his hometown (he was born in Stanley Holmes Village) and the many assets he has seen slip away during his lifetime. Above Convention Hall, etched into the stone, was a declaration: The building was conceived as a “permanent monument” to the “ideals of Atlantic City—built by its citizens.” “But we don’t own it anymore,” Ward said. “The state does.” Ditto the city’s parking authority, airport, etc., and so on down the line. Water is the last asset the city has control over and the state’s circling that too.

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