- Trump wants back in the casino business — as a landlord.
- Under a deal struck in December, Trump would sub-lease 17 acres of his Bronx golf course to Bally’s.
- Trump’s name would not be on the casino, and the deal still needs NY, NYC and local approval.
Former President Donald Trump wants back in the casino business — this time as a landlord in the Bronx.
Under an agreement struck with Bally’s in December, Trump would sub-lease a 17-acre portion of his public golf course in the Bronx to the gaming giant, which hopes to get the local, city, and state approvals needed to build a casino there.
The casino would carry Bally’s name only, not Trump’s, and the former president’s only connection would be as a landlord, according to a source familiar with the sub-lease agreement who is not authorized to speak to the public.
Bally’s proposal would join a gold-rush race that includes bids to build gaming halls in Times Square, on a vacant lot near the United Nations headquarters, across from St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and next to Citi Field, where the Mets play, the New York Times has reported.
The scramble by would-be casino developers came after New York lawmakers in January authorized up to three casinos to be built “downstate,” an area that includes Westchester County, Long Island, and New York City.
Proposals must be approved by a local community advisory committee that includes the governor, the mayor, the local state senator and assembly member, the borough president, and the local city council member. New York’s Gaming Commission would have final approval.
Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point is built on more than 200 acres of former landfill owned by the city and managed by its Parks Department; Trump leases the land and would sub-lease to Bally’s.
It is one of the former president’s 15 golf properties. The courses have lost over $300 million in the past two decades.
Bally’s would eventually like to take over the entire plot, and open much of it up as public green space, the source familiar with the sub-lease said.
“We are incredibly excited at the prospect of bringing Bally’s community-centered approach to gaming and entertainment to the Bronx,” a casino spokesperson told Insider.
“At Bally’s, we start with the proposition that the leaders in the community know what’s best for their community,” the spokesperson said, adding that conversations have already begun with “key civic leaders.”
One of those leaders is local city council member Marjorie Velazquez, who applauded the prospect of bringing jobs to her neighborhood.
“I think there is an exciting opportunity to reimagine what exists in this space,” she said in a statement. “We need more public green space in the Bronx, we need housing and jobs. Any project I would consider would need to offer a tangible benefit to my community, particularly local hiring and ensuring quality union jobs,”
The plot also sits in the congressional district of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has frequently locked horns with Trump. Her office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Trump’s own foray into the casino business ended in bankruptcy — but millions in personal profit, the New York Times reported in 2016.
The Trump Organization and the city Parks Department did not immediately respond to requests for comment.