New York Lottery leaving longtime Schenectady home, but not going far

New York Lottery leaving longtime Schenectady home, but not going far

The New York Lottery is moving out of its downtown Schenectady offices, but the trucks will not travel far.

The Lottery will relocate from One Broadway Center into a five-story, $28.5 million building at 354 Broadway, less than three blocks to the north.

According to the Office of General Services, this move is anticipated to take place in spring 2024.

According to the Office of the State Comptroller, Highbridge Broadway LLC has signed a lease for 15 years with the Gaming Commission valued at $42.8 million. The lease will begin in March 2024.

Highbridge Development of Schenectady, which has made significant investments in the Broadway corridor for the past 20 years, is building the building. John Roth, the co-founder, and managing member, says that construction is four months ahead.

Highbridge was awarded the lease following a competitive bidding process. The lease of One Broadway Center by the Gaming Commission expires on October 20, 2024.

The commission occupies six floors in the One Broadway Center tower, one of Schenectady's tallest office buildings. The commission employed 463 people statewide as of September last year.

According to OGS, the state agency has leased 96,709 sq. ft. of office space and 9,653 sq. ft. of storage space in the building.

In the same building, the Social Security Administration leases offices.

Omni Development will have a large hole to fill with the departure of Gaming Commission at a moment when many companies are reevaluating their office requirements due to hybrid schedules. Omni Development executives did not return calls seeking comment.

Ray Gillen of the Schenectady Metroplex Development Authority wrote an email expressing gratitude that the commission would keep its downtown headquarters and work with Omni to locate new commercial tenants.

Gillen wrote: "The building is located directly behind Proctors, and across the street from Metroplex Parking Garage. We have assets that could be attractive to new tenants." If the owner of the building is willing, then we can also consider residential opportunities in the downtown area. The market for apartments continues to be strong.

Bennett Liebman is an expert in the gambling industry and a lawyer at the Government Law Center at Albany Law School. He says that the Lottery Division leased offices in downtown Schenectady after moving from Albany's Empire State Plaza to Schenectady in 1991.

Liebman stated that the Lottery Division and the Racing and Wagering Board merged under the 2012 state law which created the Gaming Commission.

Since then, its duties have expanded beyond the Lottery, to include the regulation of commercial and Native American owned casinos, sports betting, and interactive fantasy sports. Three casino applications are currently being reviewed for New York City.

Liebamn stated, "It does not strike me as if they have taken on an enormous amount of personnel." They've taken on a lot of responsibilities.

Liebman estimates that the state will have about $8 billion in gambling revenues in 2022. This includes about $1.4 billion in mobile sports betting.