ATLANTIC CITY - Atlantic City is getting another makeover, aimed at making it cleaner, safer and more appealing to visitors.
The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority approved a plan Wednesday to revive parts of the struggling seaside resort. The newly empowered agency is tasked with carrying out Gov. Chris Christie's plan to turn around the nation's second-largest gambling market.
What is known as the Master Plan was officially voted through on Wednesday, as the CRDA and their 17 person panel were all in favor of starting a new renaissance in Atlantic City.
"Tonight was a exciting part of the process, what really excites me is that not only do we have the mayor of AC and board coming together, but we also have members of the community who live and work here in AC as well as the business community all coming together and agreeing on the plan to move it forward" says Chris Brown, Asm., (R) 2nd Dist.
The goal of the Master Plan is to revive Atlantic City through economic growth and job creation, and turn the city into a cleaner and safer place that attracts visitors throughout the entire year.
"That is what we are hoping for. It sounds like lighting will be improved and law enforcement will play a major part in making this a nice and safe community" says Sgt. Monica McMenamin, Atlantic City Police Department.
The plan consists of short, mid and long term goals from turning the Atlantic City Boardwalk into an entertainment zone with light shows and cafes, to transforming Atlantic and Pacific Avenues to must see streets that will include restaurants, storefronts and entertainment, to even adding additional resorts years down the road in the Marina District.
"There is a emphasis on the boardwalk and trying to create a crowd on the boardwalk that pulls you along from one end all the way to the next so that there is always something pulling you along to go to the next block and see" says Senator James Whelan, (D) NJ 2nd District.
The short term phases of the plan are expected to be completed within two years, but residents and officials expressed their opinions on getting started immediately.
"The sooner, the better. Of course haste makes waste and we don't want to trip over ourselves but certainly I think the plans that were laid out today, certainly can be accomplished. These short term goals can be accomplished within the 2 year window" says Mayor Lorenzo Langford, Atlantic City.