Tuesday, April 14, 2015

In Atlantic City, Bankrupt Casinos Try to Get Ready for Summer

Maybe Atlantic City just had too many casinos, yet that is a problem that may linger with casinos preparing to reopen. The financial fortunes of the city and its remaining casinos have improved since the wave of casino closings last year. This makes sense with customers not spread so thin. Strangely, the Trump Taj Mahal remains open in bankruptcy, and it has managed so far to block a plan to convert the neighboring Showboat casino into a college campus. The college plan probably has enough political support to go forward in the end. For its part, the Trump Taj Mahal may manage to limp through the summer season (presumably under a new name) before closing for good in October.

At Revel, a new owner who bought the casino for 4 percent of its construction price is racing against time to get electricity restored to the complex so that it can be cleaned up and ready to reopen for the summer. The new owner plans to expand the casino with a second tower, the one part of the original design that was never built, at a cost of $500 million or more. In an already overbuilt Atlantic City, the drive to expand will surely lead to more closings in the near future.