The City Planning Commission approved new zoning to make way for casino construction in the five boroughs Wednesday. 

The new zoning would allow casinos to be built in commercial and manufacturing zones throughout the city, following a rigorous state review and application process. The zoning change will head to the City Council for approval.

“We made this applicable to certain commercial and manufacturing districts in New York City, so that under New York City zoning, if you make it through the rather onerous and complicated state process, then there will be on this occasion only the possibility of locating a casino in New York City,” Dan Garodnick, chair of the City Planning Commission, said.

What You Need To Know

  • The City Planning Commission approved new zoning to move forward the construction of casinos in the five boroughs

  • The move means some city applicants will not need to go through an extensive land use review process

  • The zoning change must be approved by the City Council

The changes will mean most casino applications will not have to go through a time consuming and expensive land use process at the City Council in addition to the state licensing process already required.

Of the 11 projects expected to vie for a license, four will still need additional special approval from the City Council even after this zoning change, including a potential project at Hudson Yards, a casino proposal at CitiField, a proposed casino in Coney Island, and a potential project at the Bally’s golf course in the Bronx.

The other applicants, like one in Times Square or a massive expansion of Resorts World in Queens, would not need additional city approvals.

Two members of the planning commission voted against the zoning change, citing the need for more scrutiny of these projects.

The hotel and casino workers’ union, though, applauded the move. The union has already secured agreements from the leading contenders in this casino competition to support union labor.

“The expansion of gaming downstate and around New York City is going to create tens of thousands of those really good solid middle-class jobs, which are so desperately needed,” Rich Maroko, president of the Hotel and Gaming Trades Council, said. “I would hope that the majority of City Council members will see this is beneficial for New York and New Yorkers.”