Mayor touts an Atlantic City on the upswing

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Mayor touts an Atlantic City on the upswing. Maggie Kent reports during Action News at 4pm on June 20, 2018. (WPVI)

Atlantic City is experiencing a revival and Mayor Frank Gilliam wants everyone to know it.

"There's a renaissance, there's a synergy in the air. Three or four years ago we didn't have this feeling, it was people thinking that Atlantic City was falling in the ocean," he said.

Gilliam says it's time to take a second look at the city, along with new sports betting options.

"We're very excited about our summer series concerts will be having Demi Lovato, the Chainsmokers, Sam Hunt," said Gilliam.

Opening on June 28th is the Ocean Resort Casino - at the site of the old Revel - and Hard Rock Casino, offering more than just slots and tables. Hard Rock is hosting Carrie Underwood and Pitbull concerts on its inaugural weekend.

The casinos are also bringing thousands of jobs which were desperately needed.

"I got laid off right after the end of the summer. I have a family, two children," said Travis Zaydel, who just landed a new job as a chef at Ocean Resort Casino.
Candace Buster has seen the ebb and flow of the casino industry first-hand.

"I've been in this business for 34 years. I feel we're going to do this thing. We're going to do it. It's going to go up: everything, the business, the tourism," she said.

New investments aren't only on the boards. In September, Stockton University will open a campus downtown. Dorms will house 500 students and classes will draw another 1,000 students to the city.

"I think it's been years in coming. What we've learned is the importance of diversifying the economy," says Joe Kelly the President of the Atlantic City Chamber of Commerce.

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