The New Coney Island - Brooklyn's Times Square by the Sea

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Marty blasts concrete boardwalk

Daily News excerpt -

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz Friday blasted the city's plan to transform vast sections of the Coney Island Boardwalk into a concrete walkway.

Markowitz also didn't buy a Parks Department argument that the concrete makeover is ecologically friendly.

"We should not hastily turn our legendary Coney Island Boardwalk into just another concrete sidewalk," Markowitz wrote in a letter to Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe.

"The last thing we want to do is take away one of the main reasons people come to Coney Island!"

Read more:

Friday, October 29, 2010

Recchia posts on Halloween Parade

From Domenic's website -

I’m proud and excited to be hosting the inaugural Coney Island Children’s Halloween Parade this Saturday!

We’re going to start on the Boardwalk behind MCU Stadium at West 19th Street. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. and lineup starts at 12:15 p.m.

The parade will start at 12:45 p.m., and the route will run down the Boardwalk to Luna Park, on West 10th Street.

There will be prizes for best costume, treats for the children and a party at Luna Park to round out the day. And while we’re encouraging children from far and wide to come participate, parents are encouraged to dress up, too.

So come out and enjoy the fun. This is going to be an incredible event, and it’s just another sign that Coney Island is moving closer toward being the best year-round entertainment destination in New York City!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Coney Boardwalk going all concrete?

Brooklyn Paper excerpt -

The test results are in — and a concrete Boardwalk is inevitable!

Parks Department officials announced on Wednesday night that concrete fared far better than wood or artificial material as a replacement for the battered and broken planks stretching from Brighton Beach to Coney Island — an announcement that led locals to the inevitable conclusion that the iconic, 69-year-old Boardwalk will soon become a sidewalk.

More on the Halloween Parade

AMNY excerpt-

Mermaids, step aside. This isn’t your parade.

Costume-clad children and their parents will be hitting Coney Island on Saturday as the seaside neighborhood hosts its first ever Halloween parade.

The parade, which coincides with frightening festivities at nearby Luna Park, will lead participants down the streets of Surf Avenue from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

The parade is the latest evidence of efforts to make Coney Island attractive beyond the summer, said Chuck Reichenthal, the district manager for Community Board 13 in Coney Island.

“[The parade] is an indication that Coney Island is a year-round area where people can come to and have jobs,” he said.

Councilman Domenic Recchia raised funds for the parade, and several community members are chipping in.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Aviator Sports expands into.........Queens??

With an outdoor skating rink! Man this would have been great for a new Brooklyn location. Oh well. Hop on the Belt to the Cross Bay Blvd exit.

Aviator web site -

now offers the ONLY outdoor skating rink in QUEENS!

Our GRAND OPENING is on Veterans Day (Thursday, Nov 11th), and skating continues all winter long! Have fun with new and old friends and share the joy of outdoor ice.

Come join the skating community!

Location: Cooper Ave. at 81st — across from the shops at Atlas Park.

Days/Hours: Monday – Thursday 3pm – 8pm.
Friday 3pm – 9pm; Saturday and Sunday 10am – 10pm.

Admission: Adults $8, Children $6, and skate rentals $5.
Group and school discounts available. Call 718-758-7500.

Follow us on Facebook!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

NY1 video on Aviators Hockey

Excerpt -

The city's only minor league hockey team is set to begin its new season Friday night.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Appointment of Officers at next CIDC meeting Wednesday

From the CIDC website

Upcoming Board Meeting

A meeting of the Board of Directors of the Coney Island Development Corporation will be held on Wednesday, October 27, 2010, via conference call. The meeting will begin at 12:30 p.m. View the agenda here.

Children's Halloween Parade in Coney Saturday!

NY Post excerpt -

Councilman Domenic Recchia Jr., who organized the event by soliciting private donations, said he hopes it’ll become "as big for children someday" as the local Mermaid Parade is for adults. He said about 100 children have registered so far. Those looking to register the day of the event must be accompanied by adults.

The parade will start 12:45 p.m. on the boardwalk behind MCU Stadium at West 19th Street and it’ll run east to Luna Park at W. 10th Street. Luna Park, which will host a party afterwards, announced earlier this year it was extending its season through the end of October to celebrate the holiday in spooky style.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Brooklyn's first TJ Maxx opens today on Kings Highway

1630 E 15th St at Kings Highway
Grand Opening Sunday, October 24 at 8am

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Hotels popping up all over Brooklyn

WSJ excerpt -

Hotels are popping up everywhere in Brooklyn and the other boroughs outside Manhattan, some in very strange places.

The hotel wave is coming more than a decade after the 1998 opening of the New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn's first new luxury hotel in a half century. Now dozens of new lodgings are coming to the borough, as well as to Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx.

For instance, the 321-room full-service Sheraton Brooklyn New York Hotel opened its doors in June, and it will be followed by a boutique-style hotel, the Aloft Brooklyn, with 176 rooms in January. Both are brands of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc.

A full-service hotel, the Hyatt Place, is planned for a 2012 debut at the corner of Nevins and Schermerhorn streets. McSam Hotel Group LLC is developing the property near the future Nets basketball arena in Brooklyn, according to the NYC & Company Inc., the convention bureau. A boutique hotel and condominium project, the Hotel Williamsburg and the Residences at the Williamsburg, are scheduled for opening next spring.

Meanwhile, limited-service properties like Choice Hotels International Inc.'s Comfort Inn, InterContinental Hotels Group PLC's Holiday Inn Express and others are taking root near subway and railroad stations across the city, usually close to hospitals, airports or major highways.

"New York is a very, very hot market and everybody wants to be there. The availability of debt financing and land is the only issue" says Jan Freitag, vice president of Smith Travel Research Inc. in Hendersonville, Tenn., a hotel-data provider.

About 19 new hotels are under construction in the outer boroughs and dozens more are in the planning stages, including a Hilton on Gold Street in downtown Brooklyn, Mr. Freitag says.

More on the Demolition

Get it done already! How long does it take to bring down a building?

Brooklyn Paper excerpts -

“Thor has launched its program to revitalize Coney Island by replacing these two ramshackle structures with interim structures that will house new selections of games, shopping and food beginning next summer,” said Stefan Friedman, a spokesman.

Friedman added that the destruction of Henderson’s would soon commence, “assuming all permits are in place.”

The demolition is yet another sign that Coney Island is undergoing a significant transformation

“We eagerly anticipate the city’s fulfilling its commitment to improve the area’s long-inadequate infrastructure, so we can get to work on building the kind of permanent showpieces that will anchor a 21st-century, year-round Coney Island,” said Friedman.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Filene's Basement/Syms coming to Fulton Mall

Brooklyn Eagle excerpts -

DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — National retailer Filene's Basement/Syms will open its first Brooklyn department store on the Fulton Mall.

First reported in the New York Post, the newly merged discount store is taking a prime spot on the mall, in the building at 490 Fulton St. on the south side of the mall at the corner of Bond Street and opposite the new plaza and the future City Point development.

Commented Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, “The addition of Brooklyn’s first Filene’s Basement/Syms brings yet another reason to ‘Shop Brooklyn.’ Filene’s Basement/Syms joins a growing list of retailers setting up shop in our borough, including our top-performing Trader Joe’s and IKEA, AĆ©ropostale and H&M, both coming to Fulton Mall, and, opening today on Atlantic Avenue, Barneys Co-op. So, bye-bye, Manhattan and ‘buy, buy’ Brooklyn.”

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

CB15 wants South Brooklyn addressed in the City Waterfront Plan - Vision 2020

Bay News excerpt-

“The city has not given us enough and it has not done enough,” said CB15 Chairwoman Theresa Scavo.

CB15’s suggestions for Vision 2020 reads as a Cliffs Notes of solutions for longtime problems: the waters of Sheepshead Bay, which has been narrowed by erosion, need to be dredged because boats have been getting stuck in the sand; Plumb Beach’s sand-covered bike path needs to be cleaned up; the Belt Parkway needs a barrier to protect it from the harbor; sea walls along Gerritsen and Manhattan beaches need to be repaired to prevent flooding.

“We need long-term solutions for these problems and so far, the city has not given us any,” Scavo said.

The remaining Community Board suggestions deal with the area’s aesthetics. For instance, the board wants the city to extend the Emmons Avenue boardwalk, which now stretches from E. 15th to E. 27th streets, to Knapp Street. The board calls the proposed path “a visual corridor” that would allow pedestrians to get a better view of the water.

The city’s draft does allude to a couple of the board’s recommendations, including replenishing the sand to prevent further erosion at Plumb Beach and rebuilding its bike paths, but residents say that the city’s points of interest are inadequate.

“Just replenishing the sand and putting sand bags along Plumb Beach to protect the bike paths and the Belt Parkway is not enough,” Ditchek said. “They city needs to look at that area more carefully.”

Demolition permit issued for last building in way of Barclays Center

Nets Daily excerpt -

New York City has issued a demolition permit for the last structure standing in the way of Barclays Center: Daniel Goldstein's condominium building. The demolition will take as long as five months to complete. The building at 636 Pacific Street is strategically situated, sitting roughly where arena center court will be, and was also a symbol of the critics' resistance.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Marty suggests Drive-in movie theater for Floyd Bennett. I say expand Aviator Sports

Daily News excerpt -

Borough President Marty Markowitz suggested a drive-in movie theater, an antique market, even a Brooklyn version of the Nevada desert's wild Burning Man Festival, the marathon free-love art party.

Read more:

Just my opinion, but Aviator Sports Center has been so successful there my suggestion would be to expand it into a full version imitation of Chelsea Piers. This is the 3rd straight season we are going to have professional hockey in Brooklyn at Aviator and the rinks are also packed during the winter with recreational ice skating. You have a full gym, basketball courts, football and soccer fields there already. They also have concerts there at CenterStage and have held boxing events and various summer festivals.

Lets get some pools, bowling alleys, batting cages, tennis courts etc and expand Aviator Sports. It's a hidden Brooklyn gem!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Ratner Guarantees 2012

Daily News excerpt -

In Brooklyn, the construction of the Barclays Center is "on schedule and on budget," arena owner Bruce Ratner told the Daily News at halftime of Saturday's 90-89 preseason victory over the 76ers.

"I can guarantee 2012," Ratner said.

Ratner, who is also a minority owner of the team, has been promising the $800 million arena and a move across the Hudson since he bought the Nets in 2004. Political red tape and lawsuits delayed the process - and Ratner sold the team to Russian mogul Mikhail Prokhorov this year - but ground was finally broken in May. Ratner said excavation is "75-to-80% complete."

Read more:

Saturday, October 9, 2010

2 Big Points of interest in the next month

They both hold a great deal of importance for the future of Coney.

1. The demolition of the old buildings to finally clear away any open options for those opposed to the future hotel development. We all know what's happening here.

2. Zamperla's announcement in November of the future plan for the boardwalk in front of Scream Zone. Nobody knows what is going to happen there. The only hint we have is Zamperla's preference for a sit-down restaurant.

Big news events coming up in Coney very soon. Keep your eye on it. It's going to be interesting and really extremely important news for Coney Island's future.


My post to Tricia on the Coney Island boards. I very much look forward to her extensive coverage of this turning point in Coney -

I am really not going to feel comfortable about this issue until these old relics are torn down to the ground and steamrolled. Then I will feel comfortable that there is no way you guys can stop hotel development this administration, next administration or the one after. Until those buildings are down the development scenario is still an issue. There are options open. Afterwards things will be fine. Because there are no options left to stop hotels.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

NY Times on "Brighton Beach"

The amount of publicity this will launch for the Brooklyn beachfront next year will be absolutely amazing. They ain't doing this in the Hamptons folks, they are doing it right here in Brighton Beach Brooklyn! Absolutely incredible!

NY Times excerpt -

Brighton Beach Reality Show to Become Reality

The Russians are coming to reality TV. “Brighton Beach,” an in-depth exploration of the personal dramas of Russian-Americans in Brooklyn whose gestation we documented in March, has been picked up by the Lifetime network.

While “Brighton Beach” was conceived as sort of a “Jersey Shore” for the vodka-and-borscht set, the Lifetime version will be suitably feminized, said Michael Feeney, a spokesman for the network.

Investment dollars into Coney Island

If you guys think we have already seen the rebirth of Coney Island you ain't seen nothin yet! With a nationwide Cable TV series focusing on Brighton Beach, the eyes of the investment world will turn to the Brooklyn Beachfront.

Next year brings another turning point as "Brighton Beach" the series has the world tuning into Brooklyn!

Lifetime signs Brighton Beach reality series!

Look out Jersey Shore!!!

Hollywood Reporter excerpt -

Exclu: Three words: Russian Jersey Shore.

Lifetime has ordered 12 episodes of a new series introducing cable viewers to a whole new East Coast boardwalk scene.

Next year, the network will unveil “Brighton Beach,” about a group of Russian-Americans living on Coney Island in Brooklyn.

Unlike MTV’s youthful hit, however, “Brighton” will have a multigenerational cast that better reflects Lifetime’s audience. The show will chronicle several colorful families, with the show's action centered on a popular local nightclub.

Is Lynn Kelly leaving the CIDC?

SI live excerpt -

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- The incoming new boss of the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden is a 37-year-old former Staten Islander, an urban planner who spearheaded the redevelopment of Coney Island.

Lynn Bodnar Kelly, a vice president at the New York City Economic Development Corp. (NYCEDC), is a Brooklyn resident and a K-through-12 alumna of St. Joseph Hill Academy. She will start work at the Harbor on Dec. 1.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Looks like Zamperla will operate the Cyclone

NY1 excerpt -

Zamperla, the company that runs Luna Park, is considered a likely bidder for the Cyclone.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

As the protesters continue their fight against the hotels......

Zamperla is about to make changes to the boardwalk businesses. It just shows you how incredibly misguided and disorganized the preservationist groups have become.

Quote from the NY Post concerning the boardwalk businesses -

“Some will stay, some will go,” said Ferrari. “We’re exploring our options.”

Monday, October 4, 2010

Sit-down restaurant coming to the boardwalk

NY Post excerpt -

Buon appetito!

The Italian executive who runs Coney Island’s Luna Park — and controls the fate of honky-tonk Boardwalk businesses like Ruby’s Bar and Shoot the Freak — says he wants a fancy restaurant built there to class up the place.

“Why can’t you sit down with your newspaper and enjoy a coffee and the great view of the beach?” asked Valerio Ferrari, the CEO of Central Amusement International, the operator of Luna Park. “There needs to be a sit-down restaurant.”

Ferrari’s company’s deal with the city to run the former site of Astroland Park — along with acres of beachfront property ticketed for more amusements — includes the right to broker the leases for Boardwalk businesses between West 10th Street and Stillwell Avenue. That means he gets to say what stays and what goes once all of the leases are up on Dec. 31.

With that in mind, each of the 11 businesses operating there was asked to submit business plans justifying their existence to Central Amusement.

Ferrari said that he’d received plans from all the business owners, and said they would know their fates by the end of October. But for now, Ferrari was not revealing which ones would remain.

“Some will stay, some will go,” said Ferrari. “We’re exploring our options.”

Read more:

Sunday, October 3, 2010

More rumors about Shake Shack, Atomic Wings, Dunkin Donuts

Crains excerpt -

Shaking things up with A-bombs

Media reports earlier this summer said Shake Shack and Atomic Wings are looking for sites in the area. Shop owners worry that national chains are interested, too. Boardwalk businesses, including nightclub and restaurant Cha Cha's, received letters in August from Central Amusement International, the operator of Luna Park, asking tenants to explain why they deserve to have their leases renewed.

“Dunkin' Donuts and all of those corporate chains are not Coney Island,” says John “Cha Cha” Ciarcia, owner of Cha Cha's and nearby Beer Island. “The individuals and the characters are what make Coney Island what it is.”

In July 2009, after years of study, the city rezoned a 19-block area in an effort to breathe new life into Coney Island. It envisions a 27-acre amusement and entertainment district, with about 5,000 apartments and additional retail units.

Friday, October 1, 2010