Christie banking on new casino to spark Atlantic City revival

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says 2012 will mark the start of a comeback for Atlantic City.

The governor anticipates Atlantic City, after being on the decline for years, will begin a turnaround in the New Year. The Revel casino, which is scheduled to open in the spring, will lead the rebound, Christie said Thursday.

“It is an extraordinary facility, and it is going to draw tens of thousands of people to Atlantic City just to see it,” he said. “When they get there, I hope that they’re going to find–and I trust what they’re going to find–is a cleaner and a safer Atlantic City because of what we’ve done with the tourism district and the policing.”

Christie, who said he hopes the Revel will inspire other casinos to reinvest in their properties, said new marketing efforts also will help attract more visitors.

“More and more people are going to be hearing about Atlantic City because of the partnership between the casinos and the government and the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority in order to market and advertise it,” he said. “It’s significantly more money than was otherwise going to regulatory issues and supporting horse racing.”

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