Council votes to auction historic New Jersey airport

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — The first aviation facility in the world to be called an "airport" is going on the auction block.

The Atlantic City Council on Wednesday voted 5-4 to auction Bader Field to help relieve some of the New Jersey resort's crushing debt. The 143-acre site has been closed for nearly a decade.

The minimum bid will be $155 million and the money from the sale would go toward paying down the city's $437 million debt.

The price is considerably less than the $1.5 billion the city sought when it first put the field up for sale in 2008. Pennsylvania-based casino company Penn National offered $800 million, but the city held out.

The city's fortunes soon crashed amid competition from casinos in neighboring states and the recession.