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CRDA taps longtime South Jersey planning expert to guide strategy

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The state-run development agency for Atlantic City has brought in a longtime South Jersey planning expert to help guide nongaming investment in the resort town.

Elizabeth Terenik will serve as director of planning for the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, which has several high-profile projects underway aimed at broadening the city's appeal as a tourism destination. She most recently ran Terenik Land Use Planning, a consulting firm for local governments that's based in the Cape May Court House section of Middle Township, and is a former planning and engineering director for Ocean City.

Terenik joined CRDA in late July, though her appointment was announced today in a news release. In a prepared statement, CRDA Executive Director John Palmieri said "the planning function is a cornerstone of Atlantic City's future," so the hire was "critical" for efforts such as redeveloping the city's South Inlet section.

Plans to transform the South Inlet are at least two years in the making, calling for new private development by revitalizing a dilapidated stretch near the Revel casino. CRDA has considered proposals, such as a new park around the Absecon Lighthouse and a new academic campus by Richard Stockton College.

The agency, which was established in 1989 as a way to reinvest casino tax revenue, took over economic development for the city in 2011 with legislation that established a new state-run tourism district. CRDA has helped finance other high-profile projects recently, including a new 250,000-square-foot conference center near Harrah's Resort Atlantic City that will aim to draw new midweek group business.

Reporter Joshua Burd is @JoshBurdNJ on Twitter.

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