Scale will matter for success of New York casinos as gambling expands into crowded market

Less may be more when it comes to opening casinos in New York amid an increasingly competitive gambling environment.

More than a dozen contenders are proposing upstate casino projects. Developers say they've carefully studied the local market to ensure they don't overbuild.

That's a problem that's happened elsewhere as gambling options grow and customers favor casinos within a few hours' drive. This year, four casinos are closing in Atlantic City after facing increased competition from smaller casinos in nearby states like Pennsylvania.

Developers say a successful casino must strike a balance between being grand enough to attract customers and being modest enough to break even.

New York gambling regulators are set to award up to four upstate casino licenses this fall.