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Opposition to Times Square Casino Plans: Survey Reveals Concerns Over Traffic & Crime

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Edited by: TJVNews.com

A significant majority of locals are opposed to the idea of opening a casino in Times Square, a new survey reveals. According to information provided in a New York Post report that appeared on Thursday, the casino, backed by rapper Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, SL Green, and Caesars Entertainment, has been met with widespread resistance from residents who fear it would exacerbate traffic congestion and crime in the already bustling neighborhood.

According to the survey, which was released on Thursday and financed by the No Times Square Casino Coalition, 71% of registered voters living in or near Times Square are against the casino proposal. The report in the Post indicated that only 23% of respondents expressed support for the idea. The survey included residents from Times Square, Hell’s Kitchen, Chelsea, Murray Hill, and Gramercy Park.

Jeff Daniel, Chief Strategy Officer of The Shubert Organization and a member of the coalition, emphasized the community’s strong opposition. “The neighborhood has spoken,” Daniel said, according to the Post. “Too often, people forget that in addition to being a major global destination, the Theater District and surrounding neighborhood are a real community. The people living in this neighborhood overwhelmingly believe a casino would create massive problems, erode their quality of life, and set back the progress making this a safe, welcoming place for families.”

Residents’ primary concerns center around increased traffic and crime. Times Square is already one of the most congested areas in New York City, and the addition of a casino could exacerbate these issues, the Post report noted. The area is a major tourist destination, known as “The Crossroads of the World,” and adding a casino is seen as a potential catalyst for more significant disruptions.

The opposition cuts across all major demographic groups, with particularly strong resistance from women and seniors. The findings highlight a broader apprehension about the impact of a casino on the community’s quality of life. Indicated in the Post report was that residents fear that the casino could lead to increased crime rates and strain local infrastructure, undermining the safety and family-friendly environment of the area.

The No Times Square Casino Coalition includes influential members such as the Broadway League of Theater Owners, which plays a crucial role in the cultural and economic landscape of the neighborhood, as per the information contained in the Post report. Their opposition calls attention to the potential negative impact on the theater district, which could face increased competition and logistical challenges if a casino were introduced.

The survey’s results are troubling for all parties bidding for one of up to three licenses to open a casino in the New York City region. Notably, half of the surveyed voters in midtown Manhattan expressed opposition to opening a casino anywhere in the five boroughs. This widespread resistance suggests that any casino proposal within the city could face significant public and political hurdles.

Conducted by Tulchin Research between April 22 and 24, the survey of 400 registered voters found that less than one in ten voters, or 9%, believe Times Square is the best location for a casino, the Post report said.

According to the Post report, the poll, which has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points, highlighted several critical concerns among respondents:

A striking 81% of voters are worried that a casino in Times Square would exacerbate traffic problems in an already congested area.

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