The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority is considering building laptop lounges on the upper floors of the Atlantic City Convention Center. The project – which currently exists as a request-for-proposals – would allow businesspersons to plug in and work from the sidelines of conferences. But could it be the opportunity to do something more?
The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority board will discuss issues related to public safety in the Atlantic City Tourism District in a closed session following its public meeting on Tuesday afternoon.
The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority is preparing to sell off some of its Atlantic City real estate holdings, according to documents filed on its website.
“The CRDA seeks an experienced professional firm to market and auction surplus real property owned by the Authority and no longer necessary for its operations,” says the request for proposal. The real estate to be auctioned off ranges from a half-block package in the Inlet with a valuation of $6 million, to a $300 non-buildable alley on North Massachusetts Ave.
NJ Spotlight thinks New Jersey has a shot at luring Amazon, seeking a home for its second corporate headquarters, and “even Atlantic City” could draw interest. AC’s attraction would be partly because it’s a designated growth zone and companies making investments in the city are eligible for more tax breaks from the state’s Economic Development Authority.
Atlantic City’s trees, which already contend with hurricanes, salt water, pollution, icy winters and scorching concrete, are now also showing wear and tear as a result of the city’s financial crisis and its haphazard patchwork of planning rules. Since the Public Works department’s budget was slashed amid city-wide cuts, there are fewer people on hand to prune, water and care for the city’s greenery. Now, damaged trees are causing hazards and few replacement trees are being planted. City trees matter because, as every elementary school kid knows, they give us oxygen. But they can also help increase property values, make a city more attractive and do useful things like provide shade and suck up storm-water runoff. The importance of having a so-called urban forest is part of state and city law.
The Office of the State Auditor has begun scrutinizing the books and records of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, an official told Route 40 on Tuesday. CRDA, an Atlantic City-based government agency responsible for investing casino taxes and other government funds for economic development, has spent $2 billion on state-wide projects since its 1984 inception but it has rarely been put under the microscope. A spokeswoman for CRDA declined to comment on the audit. Some of its biggest projects in the last few years have paid for casino expansions, including $15 million spent on the Borgata night club and private pool project last year and almost $19 million spent on Tropicana’s boardwalk “enhancement” in 2014. Adding to its influence in Atlantic City, CRDA has been tasked with land use regulation and enforcement in the Tourism District (which includes the casino areas) since 2011.
A law firm is paying the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) just $1 a year for 10 sweet parking spaces in the Authority’s swanky gated lot in Atlantic City, according to a document released to Route 40 as part of a freedom-of-information request. The lot abuts Gordon’s Alley, an historic Atlantic City retail lane, where businesses and workers said they’ve been adversely affected by the lack of convenient parking. The agreement between CRDA and the law firm is ridiculous for a few reasons:
The other weekend, I rode the jitney and met people who live and work in Atlantic City (and pay their taxes) and who can’t afford to drive to work because the parking costs* in this crazy city are too high. Apparently, they’re just not working for the right companies. CRDA’s main source of revenue is from parking fees.
Living around here can be a surreal experience at times, so we decided to photograph a few of our favorite surreal places in the county. Do you live or visit this area? Do you drive by or live near a bizarre building or abandoned lot? Do you want to know more about it? We’d love to hear from you by email, on Twitter or Instagram – we’d be surprised if we couldn’t add more to this list and we’re up for some local research. We’re pretty sure there are some crazy stories behind these crazy places.