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‘We Have the Opportunity to Create a Destination’: Jay Z and Roc Nation Join Team Proposing a Casino for NYC’s Times Square

The city that never sleeps might soon be gambling the night away at a casino, and a certain Brooklyn rapper seems to have the blueprint.

Jay-Z and his entertainment company, Roc Nation, are working with two other companies to secure New York’s first casino, in Times Square, and the atmosphere might have a similarly inspired scenery of Las Vegas.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – OCTOBER 13: Shawn Carter attends the Los Angeles premiere of “The Harder They Fall” at Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall on October 13, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/Getty Images)

Is Times Square Ready for a Casino?

Jay-‘s Roc Nation would reportedly be partnering with SL Green and Caesars Entertainment to get the okay for a gaming facility at 1515 Broadway, near Seventh Ave.

“New York is the epicenter of culture. We have the opportunity to create a destination at the heart of the true crossroads of the word,” Jay-Z said in a statement. “My partnership with SL Green and Caesars has all the promise and commitment to economic opportunity, growth and enrichment for the community and everyone that visits the Empire State.” 

SL Green is an investment real estate trust that prioritizes developments such as office buildings and shopping centers in New York City. Caesars Entertainment is a well-established international hotel and resort company headquartered in Nevada.

Currently, 1515 Broadway is a multi-tenant building, with MTV as one of those tenants. One Astor Plaza is 53 percent owned and managed by SL Green; German insurance and asset management firm Allianz owns the remaining portion.

The casino would occupy only eight floors of the 54-story tower. The casino floors would include restaurants.

According to SLG chief executive officer Marc Holliday, the “boutique”-size casino might occupy as little as 250,000 square feet of floor space. And, a new, approximately 800-room, five-star hotel would open in the building above the casino floors. Holliday told The New York Post he was “not yet prepared” to say how the tower’s current office tenants, including Paramount Global’s headquarters, would be affected.

Jay-Z Comes to the Table

SL Green revealed Jay-Z and Roc’s addition to the proposal during its annual investor group conference call on Dec. 5. SL Green disclosed that Jay-Z’s entertainment agency will be the official entertainment partner in the purported deal.

According to The New York Daily News, the proposed casino could bring an additional seven million visits annually to the city’s biggest tourist attraction, and about 600,000 overnight visits to local hotels could be gained.

Because of this, spending would increase as well, with surrounding businesses like retail stores potentially seeing a more than $166 million increase.

There also is a great likelihood that Broadway shows will gain from the traffic.

Jay-Z and company aren’t the only ones proposing a casino for NYC. There are a half-dozen teams that are also expected to submit proposals to the state of New York for a first full-scale casino in the Big Apple, The New York Post reported.

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