Friends of Liberty State Park, a non-profit group dedicated to protecting and preserving the Jersey City landmark, are urging residents to vote no on the casino ballot question to prevent Liberty Rising from becoming a reality.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“There should be NO CASINO NEXT TO LIBERTY STATE PARK on land owned by Liberty National Golf Course owner Paul Fireman!,” the group wrote on their official website.
“If you live in Jersey City, please vote NO on the November ballot referendum. Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop has pledged that if the majority of Jersey City voters vote NO, then he will not allow the casino to be built in Jersey City.”
Liberty Rising, a $4 billion, 90-story luxury casino complex and the brainchild of billionaire Reebok founder Paul Fireman, had been first rumored in June 2015 and a pro-North Jersey casino website surfaced earlier this month.
The complex would be located south of Liberty State Park and between an industrial area and Liberty National Golf Course.
At a community meeting in January, Fulop advocated for a city casino, claiming it would cause “a revenue boon” that could create upwards of 6,000 jobs.
However, by March, the long rumored Democratic gubernatorial candidate softened on his stance at another public meeting in March and said he would ultimately follow the will of Jersey City voters.
After a trip to Atlantic City in April, Fulop soured on the idea of bringing a casino to Jersey City, though is not opposed to having one in another part of North Jersey.
FOLSP agrees with that notion, stating the Meadowlands could be a better fit than Jersey City.
“A casino may be fine in the Meadowlands if those communities want it there, but casino traffic at Exit 14B and along Caven Point Road and Phillips Street would be unpreventable and a casino must never happen right outside of Liberty State Park,” they also wrote, also stressing that traffic jams caused by a casino would limit public access to the park.
A city spokeswoman did not return an email seeking further comment.