Coney Island is a residential and commercial neighborhood and entertainment area in the southwestern part of the borough of Brooklyn in New York City. The neighborhood is bounded by Sea Gate to its west, Brighton Beach and Manhattan Beach to its east, Lower New York Bay to the south, and Gravesend to the north. Coney Island was formerly the westernmost of the Outer Barrier islands on the southern shore of Long Island, but in the early 20th century it became a peninsula, connected to the rest of Long Island by land fill.
Coney Island's name comes from a colonial Dutch translation of "Rabbit Island". It was originally part of the colonial town of Gravesend. By the mid-19th century, Coney Island became a seaside resort, and by the late 19th century, amusement parks were also built at the location. The attractions reached a historical peak during the first half of the 20th century. However, they declined in popularity after World War II, and following years of neglect, several structures were torn down. Various redevelopment projects were proposed for Coney Island in the 1970s through the 2000s, though most of these were not carried out. The area was revitalized with the opening of the MCU Park in 2001 and several amusement rides in the 2010s.
Coney Island has 31,965 residents as of the 2010 United States Census. The neighborhood is ethnically diverse, though the neighborhood's poverty rate of 27% is slightly higher than that of the city as a whole.
Coney Island is part of Brooklyn Community Board 13. It is patrolled by the NYPD's 60th Precinct. Coney Island is also served by Battalion 43, Engine 245/Ladder 161, and Engine 318/Ladder 166 of the FDNY, and Station 43 of the FDNY Bureau of EMS. The area is well served by the New York City Subway and local bus routes, and contains several public elementary and middle schools.
Coney Island beach, amusement parks, and high rises as seen from the pier in June 2016
Location in New York City
|City||New York City|
|Founded by||Dutch settlers|
|• Total||0.691 sq mi (1.790 km2)|
|• Density||36,000/sq mi (14,000/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−05:00 (Eastern Time Zone)|
|Telephone area code||718, 347, 929, and 917|
Coney Island is a peninsula on the western end of Long Island lying to the west of the Outer Barrier islands along Long Island's southern shore. The peninsula is about 4 miles (6.4 km) long and 0.5 miles (0.80 km) wide. It extends into Lower New York Bay with Sheepshead Bay to its northeast, Gravesend Bay and Coney Island Creek to its northwest, and the main part of Brooklyn to its north. At its highest it is 7 feet (2.1 m) above sea level. Coney Island was formerly an actual island, separated from greater Brooklyn by Coney Island Creek, and was the westernmost of the Outer Barrier islands. A large section of the creek was filled as part of a 1920s and 1930s land and highway development, turning the island into a peninsula.
The perimeter of Coney Island features man made structures designed to maintain its current shape. The beaches are currently not a natural feature; the sand that is naturally supposed to replenish Coney Island is cut off by the jetty at Breezy Point, Queens.:337 Sand has been redeposited on the beaches via beach nourishment since 1922-1923, and is held in place by around two dozen groynes. A large sand-replenishing project along Coney Island and Brighton Beach took place in the 1990s.:337 Sheepshead Bay on the north east side is, for the most part, enclosed in bulkheads.
The original Native American inhabitants of the region, the Lenape, called this area Narrioch. This name has been attributed the meaning of "land without shadows" or "always in light" describing how its south facing beaches always remained in sunlight. A second meaning attributed to Narrioch is "point" or "corner of land".
The first documented European name for the island is the Dutch name Conyne Eylandt or Conynge Eylandt. This would roughly be equivalent to Konijn Eiland using modern Dutch spelling, meaning Rabbit Island. The name was anglicized to Coney Island after the English took over the colony in 1664, coney being the corresponding English word.
There are several alternative theories for the origin of the name. One posits that it was named after a Native American tribe, the Konoh, who supposedly once inhabited it. Another surmises that Conyn was the surname of a family of Dutch settlers who lived there. Yet a third interpretation claims that "Conyne" was a distortion of the name of Henry Hudson's second mate on the Halve Maen, John Colman, who was slain by natives on the 1609 expedition and buried at a place they named Colman's Point, possibly coinciding with Coney Island.
Giovanni da Verrazzano was the first European explorer to discover the island of Narrioch during his expeditions to the area in 1527 and 1529. He was subsequently followed by Henry Hudson.:34 The Dutch established the colony of New Amsterdam in present-day Coney Island in the early 17th century. The Native American population in the area dwindled as the Dutch settlement grew and the entire southwest section of present-day Brooklyn was purchased in 1645 from the Native Americans in exchange for a gun, a blanket, and a kettle.
In 1644, a colonist named Guysbert Op Dyck was given a patent for 88 acres of land in the town of Gravesend, on the southwestern shore of Brooklyn. The patent included Conyne Island, an island just off the southwestern shore of the town of Gravesend, as well as Conyne Hook, a peninsula just east of the island. At the time, both were part of Gravesend.:4 East of Conyne Hook was the largest section of island called Gysbert's, Guysbert's, or Guisbert's Island (also called Johnson Island), containing most of the arable land and extending east through today's Brighton Beach and Manhattan Beach.:34 This was officially the first official real estate transaction for the island. Op Dyck never occupied his patent, and in 1661 he sold it off to Dick De Wolf. The land's new owner banned Gravesend residents from using Guisbert's Island and built a salt-works on the land, provoking outrage among Gravesend livestock herders. New Amsterdam was transferred to the English in 1664, and four years later, the English Governor created a new charter for Gravesend that excluded Coney Island. Subsequently, Guisbert's Island was divided into plots meted out to several dozen settlers. However, in 1685, the island became part of Gravesend again as a result of a new charter with the Native Americans.:36
At the time of European settlement, the land that makes up the present-day Coney Island was divided across several separate islands. All of these islands were part of the outer barrier on the southern shore of Long Island, and their land areas and boundaries changed frequently.:34 Only the westernmost island was called Coney Island; it currently makes up part of Sea Gate. At the time, it was a 1.25-mile shifting sandspit with a detached island at its western end extending into Lower New York Bay. In a 1679–1680 journal, Jasper Danckaerts and Peter Sluyter noted that "Conijnen Eylandt" was fully separated from the rest of Brooklyn. The explorers observed::36
Nobody lives upon it, but it is used in winter for keeping cattle, horses, oxen, hogs and others, which are able to obtain there sufficient to eat the whole winter, and to shelter themselves from the cold in the thickets. This island is not so cold as Long Island or the Mahatans, or others, like some other islands on the coast, in consequence of their having more sea breeze, and of the saltness of the sea breaking upon the shoals, rocks and reefs, with which the coast is beset.:36
By the early 18th century, the town of Gravesend was periodically granting seven-year-long leases to freeholders, who would then have the exclusive use of Coney Hook and Coney Island. In 1734, a road to Coney Hook was laid out.:37 Thomas Stillwell, a prominent Gravesend resident who was the freeholder for Coney Island and Coney Hook at the time, proposed to build a ditch through Coney Hook so it would be easier for his cattle to graze. He convinced several friends in the nearby town of Jamaica to help him in this effort, telling them that the creation of such a ditch would allow them to ship goods from Jamaica Bay to New York Harbor without having to venture out into the ocean.:37 In 1750, the "Jamaica Ditch" was dug through Coney Hook from Brown's Creek in the west to Hubbard's Creek in the east.:34 The creation of the canal turned Coney Hook into a detached 0.5-mile-long (0.80 km) island called Pine Island, so named due to the woods on it.:34
Each island was separated by an inlet that could only be crossed at low tide. By the end of the 18th century, the ongoing shifting of sand along the barrier islands had closed up the inlets to the point that residents began filling them in and joining them as one island. Development of Coney Island was slow until the 19th century due to land disputes, the American Revolutionary War, and the War of 1812. Coney Island was so remote that Herman Melville wrote Moby-Dick on the island in 1849, and Henry Clay and Daniel Webster discussed the Missouri Compromise at the island the next year.
In 1824, the Gravesend and Coney Island Road and Bridge Company built the first bridge across Jamaica Ditch (by now known as Coney Island Creek), connecting the island with the mainland. The company also built a shell road across the island to the beaches. In 1829, the company also built the first hotel on the island: the Coney Island House, near present day Sea Gate.:8
Due to Coney Island's proximity to Manhattan and other boroughs, and its simultaneous relative distance from the city of Brooklyn to provide the illusion of a proper vacation, it began attracting vacationers in the 1830s and 1840s, assisted by carriage roads and steamship service that reduced travel time from a formerly half-day journey to two hours.:15 Most of the vacationers were wealthy and went by carriage. Inventor Samuel Colt built an observation tower on the peninsula in 1845, but he abandoned the project soon after. In 1847, the middle class started going to Coney Island upon the introduction of a ferry line to Norton's Point—named after hotel owner Michael Norton—at the western portion of the peninsula. Gang activity started as well, with one 1870s writer noting that going to Coney Island could result in losing money and even lives. The Brooklyn, Bath and Coney Island Railroad became the first railroad to reach Coney Island when it opened in 1864, and it was completed in 1867.:71
In 1868, William A. Engeman built a resort in the area. The resort was given the name "Brighton Beach" in 1878 by Henry C. Murphy and a group of businessmen, who chose to name as an allusion to the English resort city of Brighton. With the help of Gravesend's surveyor William Stillwell, Engeman acquired all 39 lots for the relatively low cost of $20,000.:38 This 460-by-210-foot (140 by 64 m) hotel, with rooms for up to 5,000 people nightly and meals for up to 20,000 people daily, was close to the then-rundown western Coney Island, so it was mostly the upper middle class that went to this hotel. The 400-foot (120 m), double-decker Brighton Beach Bathing Pavilion was also built nearby and opened in 1878, with the capacity for 1,200 bathers.:38 "Hotel Brighton", also known as the "Brighton Beach Hotel", was situated on the beach at what is now the foot of Coney Island Avenue. The Brooklyn, Flatbush, and Coney Island Railway, the predecessor to the New York City Subway's present-day Brighton Line, opened on July 2, 1878, and provided access to the hotel.:38
Simultaneously, wealthy banker August Corbin was developing adjacent Manhattan Beach after being interested in the area during a trip to the beach to heal his sick son. Corbin, who worked on Wall Street and had many railroad investments, built the New York and Manhattan Beach Railway for his two luxury shoreline hotels. These hotels were used by the wealthy upper class, who would not go to Brighton Beach because of its proximity to Coney Island. The 150-room Manhattan Beach Hotel—which was designed by J. Pickering Putnam and contained restaurants, ballrooms, and shops—was opened for business in July 1877 at a ceremony presided over by President Ulysses S. Grant. The similarly prodigal Oriental Hotel, which hosted rooms for wealthy families staying for extended periods, was opened in August 1880.
Andrew R. Culver, president of the Prospect Park and Coney Island Railroad, had built a steam railway to West Brighton, the Culver Line, before Corbin and Engeman had even built their railroads. For 35 cents, one could ride the Prospect Park & Coney Island Railroad to the Culver Depot terminal at Surf Avenue. Across the street from the terminal, the 300-foot (91 m) Iron Tower, bought from the 1876 Philadelphia Exposition, provided patrons with a bird's-eye view of the coast. The nearby "Camera Obscura" similarly used mirrors and lens to provide a panoramic view of the area. Coney Island became a major resort destination after the Civil War as excursion railroads and the Coney Island & Brooklyn Railroad streetcar line reached the area in the 1860s and 1870s, followed by the Iron Steamboat Company ferry to Manhattan in 1881.:29:64
The 150-suite Cable Hotel was built nearby in 1875. Next to it, on a 12-acre (4.9 ha) piece of land leased by James Voorhies, maitre d' Paul Bauer built the western peninsula's largest hotel, which opened in 1876. By the turn of the century, Victorian hotels, private bathhouses, and vaudeville theaters were a common sight on Coney island.:147 The three resort areas—Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach and West Brighton—competed with each other for clientele, with West Brighton gradually becoming the most popular destination by the early 1900s.
In the 1890s, Norton's Point on the western side of Coney Island was developed into Sea Gate, a gated summer community that catered mainly to the wealthy. A private yacht carried visitors directly from the Battery at the southern tip of Manhattan Island. Notable tenants within the community included the Atlantic Yacht Club, which built a colonial style house along the waterfront.
Between about 1880 and World War II, Coney Island was the largest amusement area in the United States, attracting several million visitors per year. At its height, it contained three competing major amusement parks—Luna Park, Dreamland, and Steeplechase Park—as well as many independent amusements.:147–150:11 The area was also the center of new technological events, with electric lights, roller coasters, and baby incubators among the innovations at Coney Island in the 1900s.:147 By the first decade of the 20th century, Coney Island was seen as a top getaway and "a symbol of Americans' increasing pride".:21–22
Charles I. D. Looff, a Danish woodcarver, built the first carousel and amusement ride at Coney Island in 1876, and hand-carved the designs into the carousel. It was installed at Lucy Vandeveer's bath-house complex at West 6th Street and Surf Avenue. Looff subsequently commissioned another carousel at Feltman's Ocean Pavilion in 1880.:88
From 1885 to 1896, the Elephantine Colossus, a seven-story building (including a brothel) in the shape of an elephant, was the first sight to greet immigrants arriving in New York, who would see it before they saw the Statue of Liberty. The Coney Island "Funny Face" logo, which is still extant, dates 100 years to the early days of George C. Tilyou's Steeplechase Park. The development of amusement parks in Coney Island intensified in the 1890s. The first such park was the Sea Lion Park, which opened in 1895 and continued operating until 1902, and was the first amusement park to charge entry fees. The Sea Lion Park's opening spurred the construction of Steeplechase Park, which opened in 1897.:12
Starting in the early 1900s, the City of New York made efforts to condemn all buildings and piers built south of Surf Avenue in an effort to reclaim the beach and create a boardwalk, which by then had been almost completely developed. The local amusement community opposed the city. Eventually a settlement was reached where the beach did not begin until 1,000 feet (300 m) south of Surf Avenue, the territory marked by a city-owned boardwalk, while the city would demolish any structures that had been built over public streets, to reclaim beach access.
When the Brooklyn Rapid Transit Company electrified the steam railroads and connected Brooklyn to Manhattan via the Brooklyn Bridge at the beginning of the 20th century, Coney Island turned rapidly from a resort to an accessible location for day-trippers seeking to escape the summer heat in New York City's tenements. In 1915, the Sea Beach Line was upgraded to a subway line, followed by the other former excursion roads, and the opening of the Stillwell Avenue station in 1919 ushered in Coney Island's busiest era. On the busiest summer days, over a million people would travel to Coney Island. This created tensions between longtime New York City residents and more recent immigrants who liked to patronize Coney Island.:23
In 1916, Nathan Handwerker started selling hot dogs at Coney Island for a nickel each. This later evolved into the Nathan's Famous hot dog chain.:22–23 Coney Island's development as an amusement area continued through the end of World War II. The opening of Deno's Wonder Wheel in 1920, the Riegelmann Boardwalk in 1923, the Coney Island Cyclone in 1927, and the Parachute Jump in 1939 contributed to the area's quality as an amusement destination.:147:23–24
Until the early 20th century, Coney Island was still an island, separated from the main part of Brooklyn by the 3-mile-long (4.8 km) Coney Island Creek. There were plans for several decades in the 19th century and early 20th century to dredge and straighten the creek as a ship canal, but they were abandoned. By 1924, local land owners and the city had filled a portion of the creek.:337 A major section of the creek was further filled in to allow construction of the Belt Parkway in the 1930s, and the western and eastern ends of the island became peninsulas. More fill was added in 1962 during the construction of the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge.
In 1937, New York City parks commissioner Robert Moses published a report about the possible redevelopment of Coney Island, as well as the Rockaway and the South Beach of Staten Island. Moses wrote of Coney Island, "There is no use bemoaning the end of the old Coney Island fabled in song and story. The important thing is not to proceed in the mistaken belief that it can be revived." He further wrote that the boardwalk should be redeveloped, and that old buildings should be demolished to make way for parking facilities. As part of Moses's plan, a 0.67-mile (1.08 km) segment of the Coney Island beach would be rebuilt at a cost of $3.5 million. This was originally rejected as being too expensive. In August 1938, Moses submitted a plan to expand the Coney Island beach by 18 acres (7.3 ha) using shorefront from Brighton Beach. The next year, Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia endorsed Moses's revised plan to redevelop Coney Island as a city-operated park area, unifying all the discrete resorts under public control. The reconstruction of the Coney Island boardwalk could be achieved by purchasing a 400-foot-wide (120 m) strip of land along the shoreline, which would allow the boardwalk to be moved 300 feet (91 m) inland. At this point, Coney Island was so crowded on summer weekends that Moses observed that a coffin would provide more space per person.
In August 1944, Luna Park was severely damaged by a fire that burned half of the park. Two years later, in August 1946, it was closed permanently and sold to a company who announced they were going to tear down what was left of Luna Park and build Quonset huts for military veterans and their families. Moses asked the city to transfer its land along the Coney Island waterfront to the Parks Department. The city granted him that request in 1949. Moses then had the land rezoned for residential use, with a stipulation that the complex must include low-income housing. He ultimately planned for "about a third" of attractions along Surf Avenue, one block north of the beach, to be demolished and replaced with housing. Moses moved the boardwalk back from the beach several yards, demolishing many structures, including the city's municipal bath house. He would later demolish several blocks of amusements as well.:149 He claimed that fewer amusement-seekers were going to Coney Island every year, because they preferred places where they could bathe outdoors, such as Jones Beach State Park on Long Island, rather than the "mechanical gadget" attractions of Coney Island. Moses also announced that the Steeplechase Pier would be closed for a year so it could be renovated.
In 1953, Moses proposed that most of the peninsula be rezoned for various uses, claiming that it would be an "upgrade" over the various business and unrestricted zones that existed at the time. Steeplechase Park would be allowed to remain open, but much of the shorefront amusements and concessions would be replaced by residential developments. After many complaints from the public and from concession operators, the Estimate Board reinstated the area between West 22nd and West Eighth Streets as an amusement-only zone, with the zone extending 200 to 400 feet (61 to 122 m) inland from the shoreline. Moses's subsequent proposal to extend the Coney Island boardwalk east to Manhattan Beach was denied in 1955. A proposal to make the Quonset hut development into a permanent housing structure was also rejected.
A new building for the New York Aquarium was approved for construction in the neighborhood in 1953.:687 Construction started on the aquarium in 1954. The development of the new New York Aquarium was expected to revitalize Coney Island. By 1955, the area still included four children's amusement areas, five roller coasters, several flat and dark rides, and various other attractions such as Deno's Wonder Wheel. The New York Aquarium's new site opened in June 1957. At this point, there were still several dozens of rides on Coney Island.
During the summers of 1964 and 1965, there was a large decrease in the number of visitors to Coney Island because of the 1964/1965 World's Fair at Flushing Meadows–Corona Park in Queens. Crime increases, insufficient parking facilities, bad weather, and the post-World War II automotive boom were also cited as contributing factors in the visitor decrease. During the summer of 1964, concessionaires saw their lowest profits in a quarter-century. Ride operators reported that they had 30% to 90% fewer visitors in 1964 compared to the previous year.
In 1964, Coney Island's last remaining large theme park, Steeplechase Park, was closed and subsequently demolished.:172 The surrounding blocks were filled with amusement rides and concessions that were closed or about to close.:172 The rides at Steeplechase Park were auctioned off, and the property was sold to developer Fred Trump, the father of developer and U.S. president Donald Trump. In 1965, Fred Trump announced that wanted to build luxury apartments on the old Steeplechase property. At the time, residential developments on Coney Island in general were being built at a rapid rate. The peninsula, which had 34,000 residents in 1961, was expected to have more than double that number by the end of 1964. Many of the new residents moved into middle-income co-operative housing developments such as Trump Village, Warbasse Houses, and Luna Park Apartments; these replaced what The New York Times described as "a rundown sprawl of rickety houses". Developers were spending millions of dollars on new housing developments, and by 1966, the peninsula housed almost 100,000 people.
Trump destroyed Steeplechase Park's Pavilion of Fun during a highly publicized ceremony in September 1966.:172 In its stead, Trump proposed building a 160-foot-high (49 m) enclosed dome with recreational facilities and a convention center, a plan which was supported by Brooklyn borough president Abe Stark. That summer, developers tried to revitalize the Coney Island boardwalk as an amusement area. In October 1966, the city announced its plans to acquire the 125 acres (51 ha) of the former Steeplechase Park so that the land could be reserved for recreational use. Although residents supported the city's action, Trump called the city's proposal "wasteful". In January 1968, New York City parks commissioner August Heckscher II proposed that the New York state government build an "open-space" state park on the Steeplechase site, and that May, the New York City Board of Estimate voted in favor of funding to buy the land from Trump. Condemnation of the site started in 1969. The city ultimately purchased the proposed park's site for $4 million, with partial funding from the federal government. As a condition of the deal, the sale or lease of the future parkland required permission from the New York State Legislature, thus blocking Trump from developing the site as apartments.
Trump filed a series of court cases related to the proposed residential rezoning, and ultimately won a $1.3 million judgment. The Steeplechase Park site laid empty for several years. Trump started subleasing the property to Norman Kaufman, who ran a small collection of fairground amusements on a corner of the site, calling his amusement park "Steeplechase Park".:172 The city also leased the boardwalk and parking lot sites at extremely low rates, which resulted in a $1 million loss of revenue over the following seven years. Since the city wanted to build the state park on the site of Kaufman's Steeplechase Park, it attempted to evict him by refusing to grant a lease extension.
By 1975, the city was considering demolishing the Coney Island Cyclone in favor of an extension of the adjacent New York Aquarium.:153 The Aquarium supported the Cyclone's demolition, while the Coney Island Chamber of Commerce opposed it. After a refurbishment by Astroland, the Cyclone reopened for the summer 1975 season. The abandoned Parachute Jump was left in situ. However, in 1977, the New York City Planning Commission declined a proposal to grant landmark status to the attraction, as it intended to tear down the Parachute Jump.:174
The city continued to pursue litigation over the site occupied by Norman Kaufman. For over ten years, the city was unsuccessful in its efforts. It had no plan for the proposed state park, and in 1975 the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development nearly withdrew a proposed grant of $2 million to fund the proposed park. The city ultimately accepted the grant. However, in June 1977, the city's parks commissioner suggested that the city would redevelop the original Steeplechase Park's site as an amusement area instead of an open-space state park, and proposed that the city return the grant. This move was opposed by the chairman of the New York City Planning Commission, who wanted to use the grant to pay for pedestrian walkways at the Steeplechase site. In 1977 and 1978, Kaufman withheld rent payments to the city because of the ongoing litigation, and he sued the city for $1.7 million. By 1979, Kaufman had expanded his park and had plans to eventually rebuild the historic Steeplechase Park. He had also bought back the original Steeplechase horse ride with plans to install it the following season. Although the city purchased Steeplechase Park from Fred Trump in 1979, Kaufman continued to operate the site until the end of summer 1980. In June 1981, the city paid Kaufman a million dollars for the rides, even though the amusements were estimated to be worth much less than that. Still, the city had finally succeeded in evicting Kaufman from the property.
In 1979, the state announced that it would be conducting a report on the feasibility of legalizing gambling in New York State, Mayor Ed Koch proposed that the state open casinos in New York City to revitalize the area's economy. Residents and politicians supported the idea of building casinos Coney Island, since that could potentially reverse the area's growing negative reputation, as well as lower the neighborhood's poverty, crime, and property-vacancy rates. Koch later clarified that he would support gambling in New York City if a casino were to be built either in Coney Island or the Rockaways, but not in midtown Manhattan, and if the city received certain shares of table game and slot machine profits. There was substantial controversy over the plans to place a gambling site in Coney Island. The state's interest in legalizing gambling subsided by 1981, and the New York state legislature failed to take action on proposals to legalize gambling.
By 1982, the area was filled with vacant lots, though several residential developments were being planned for Coney Island. Having finally acquired Kaufman's rides, the New York City government began advertising for developers to redevelop the former amusement park area that November. The Mermaid-Neptune Development Corporation constructed three residential developments at the neighborhood's western edge, with a combined total of 430 units. These developments were completed through the mid-1980s. However, the area was still beset with social issues. Crime was high, and there were many drug dealings and killings, especially west of West 20th Street. Former amusement structures such as the Parachute Jump lay unused, and prostitutes roamed around the neighborhood at night. Through the 1980s, prostitution and drug use in Coney Island increased, as did the area's murder and felony crime rate. By the late 1980s, deadly shootings were common, particularly in the low-income housing developments inside Coney Island.
In the mid-1980s, restaurant mogul Horace Bullard proposed rebuilding Steeplechase Park. He had already bought several acres of property just east of the Steeplechase Park site, including the site of the defunct Thunderbolt coaster and the lots west of the Abe Stark rink, and planned to spend $20 million just on cleaning up the neighborhood.:150 His plans called for using the property, bounded by West 15th and 19th Streets between Surf Avenue and the Boardwalk, to build a $55 million theme park based on the original. The city agreed, and the project was approved in 1985.:150 Bullard planned to open the park by mid-1986 to coincide with the Statue of Liberty's centennial. However, the project was delayed while the New York City Planning Commission compiled an environmental impact report. By early 1987, the cost of the amusement park nearly doubled, to $100 million.
Concurrently, in December 1986, the New York State Urban Development Corporation formally proposed the construction of a $58 million, 17,000-seat minor-league baseball stadium on the land bounded by West 19th and 22nd Streets, Surf Avenue, and the boardwalk, sandwiched between Bullard's development to the west and the New York Aquarium to the east. There would also be a 15,000-seat indoor arena north of the Abe Stark Rink. Negotiations were ongoing with the Mets and Yankees to ensure their support for the minor-league stadium. State senator Thomas Bartosiewics attempted to block Bullard from building on the Steeplechase site. Bartosiewics was part of the Brooklyn Sports Foundation, which had promised another developer, Sportsplex, the right to build an amateur sports arena on the site. Construction was held up for another four years as Bullard and Sportsplex fought over the site. By mid-1989, Bullard and the city were ready to sign a contract that would allow the developer to invest $250 million on Coney Island's redevelopment. Bullard wanted to construct a 60-ride amusement park on a 25-acre (10 ha) waterfront strip, which would be completed by 2002. The city would pay $20 million to build a parking lot for the amusement park.
Other proposals for the area included a $7.9 million restoration of the boardwalk, as well as a new high-school and college sports stadium. Some of Coney Island's iconic rides were designated as official city landmarks during the late 1980s. In 1988, the Cyclone roller coaster was made a New York City designated landmark. This was followed by the Parachute Jump and the Wonder Wheel in 1989. The neighborhood's high crime rate had reversed slightly by the 1990s. However, Coney Island's relative isolation from the rest of New York City, along with its ethnic diversity, deprived the area of significant political power, and to a greater extent money.
After Rudy Giuliani took office as mayor of New York in 1994, he negated the Bullard deal by approving the construction a minor-league baseball stadium on the site allotted for Steeplechase Park.:150 Giuliani stated that he wanted to build Sportsplex, provided that it included the stadium for a minor-league team owned by the Mets. By doing this, Giuliani wanted to improve sports facilities in the area, as well as found a professional baseball team in Brooklyn. By the late 1990s, some $67 million had been secured for the development of Sportsplex. Developer Bruce Ratner proposed constructing a $100 million entertainment complex next to Sportsplex, between West 9th and West 15th Streets, in 1997. The complex would include a "virtual-reality amusement park" as well as a movie theater multiplex. Concurrently, a four-phase, 873-unit housing development in Coney Island was completed in 1996.
In 1998, Giuliani had canceled Sportsplex and the entertainment complex, and instead unveiled another plan where only the parking lot would be built. The Sports Foundation had prepared another proposal that would allow a scaled-down Sportsplex to be built next to the minor-league baseball stadium. The minor league team was called the Brooklyn Cyclones, though naming rights to the stadium were sold to Keyspan Energy. Bullard, now no longer rebuilding Steeplechase Park, had wanted to restore the Thunderbolt as part of a scaled-down amusement park. Giuliani had the coaster demolished on the grounds that the Thunderbolt was about to collapse, though the coaster's destruction took weeks.:150 In 2000, the city approved the $31 million project to construct Keyspan Park using the funds from the canceled Sportsplex, and the minor-league baseball stadium opened the following year. Other major projects at the time included the reconstruction of Coney Island's sewers and the refurbishment of the Stillwell Avenue subway station; the Stillwell Avenue station's renovation was completed in 2005.
In 2003, Mayor Michael Bloomberg took an interest in revitalizing Coney Island as a possible site for the New York City bid of the 2012 Summer Olympics. A plan was developed by the Astella Development Corporation. When the city lost the bid for the Olympics, revitalization plans were passed on to the Coney Island Development Corporation (CIDC), which came up with a plan to restore the resort.
Shortly before the CIDC's plans were to be publicly released, a development company named Thor Equities purchased all of Bullard's 168,000-square-foot (15,600 m2) western property for $13 million, almost six times what it had been valued. In less than a year, Thor sold the property to Taconic Investment Partners for over $90 million.:158 Taconic now had 100 acres (40 ha), on which it planned to build 2,000 apartment units.:158–159 Thor then went about using much of its $77 million profit to purchase property on Stillwell Avenue for well over market value, and offered to buy out every piece of property inside the traditional amusement area.:158–159
In September 2005, Thor's founder, Joe Sitt, unveiled his new plans for a large Bellagio-style hotel resort with a timeshare development, surrounded by rides and amusements. The CIDC report suggested adding year-round commercial and amusement area, and recommended that property north of Surf Avenue and west of Abe Stark Rink could be rezoned for other uses, including residential. Sitt, a resident of the area, spent more than $100 million to buy land in Coney Island. Astroland owner Carol Hill Albert, whose husband's family had owned the park since 1962, sold the site to Thor in November 2006. Two months later Thor released renderings for a new amusement park to be built on the Astroland site called Coney Island Park. The amusement park would cost $1.5 billion and include hotels, shopping, movies, an indoor water park, and the city's first new roller coasters since the 1920s.
In 2007, the DCP started circulating a rezoning plan that would cover 47 acres (19 ha) of Coney Island. The city would spend $120 million to redevelop 15 acres (6.1 ha) into an amusement park surrounded by around 5,000 new housing units. The Aquarium was also planning a renovation in conjunction with the rezoning. The city's and Sitt's proposals directly conflicted: Sitt wanted to build housing inside the amusement park, while the city's rezoning would create a special amusement district where residential development was forbidden. In April 2008, because of objections from land owners, residents, and developers, the city revised its rezoning proposal. Only 9 acres would be used as an amusement park, while private owners and developers could build on the rest of the land as long as they followed the DCP's general master plan. While the city negotiated with Thor, Sitt evicted several amusement operators on his land, including Astroland, in the expectation that he would soon be able to redevelop it.
The DCP certified the rezoning plan in January 2009, which allowed the city to create a 9.4-acre (3.8 ha) amusement district. At the time, Thor Equities said it hoped to complete the project by 2011. Thor Equities planned to demolish most of the iconic, early 20th-century buildings along Surf Avenue, and Sitt planned to build low-density retail in their place. In June 2009, the city's planning commission approved the construction of 4,500 units of housing, including 900 affordable units, and promised to preserve affordable housing already in the neighborhood. Subsequently, the city government paid Sitt $95.6 million for 7 acres (2.8 ha) of land. The nonprofit civic group, Municipal Art Society, wanted the city-operated park to be larger, though the city was reluctant to spend so much money.
The Zipper and Spider on West 12th Street were closed permanently and dismantled in September 2007 after its owner lost his lease. The same year, plans to restore Coney Island's historic B&B Carousell were revealed. After Astroland closed in 2008, it was replaced by a new Dreamland in 2009 and by a new Luna Park in 2010. In April 2011, the first new roller coasters to be built at Coney Island in eighty years were opened as part of efforts to reverse the decline of the amusement area. The B&B Carousell reopened in 2013 at Luna Park. The Thunderbolt steel roller coaster, named after the original wooden coaster on the site, was opened in June 2014.
In 2012, Hurricane Sandy caused major damage to the Coney Island amusement parks, the Aquarium, and businesses. However, the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest was held the following summer, as usual. Luna Park at Coney Island reopened on March 24, 2013. Rebuilding of the aquarium started in early 2013, and a major expansion of the aquarium opened in summer 2018.
In August 2018, the NYCEDC and NYC Parks announced that the Coney Island amusement area would be expanded. The new rides would be located on a 150,000-square-foot (14,000 m2) city-operated parcel between West 15th and West 16th Streets, next to the new Thunderbolt coaster. The rides, to be operated by Luna Park, would include a 40-foot-high (12 m) log flume to be opened in 2020, as well as a zip-line and a ropes course that would open in 2019. There would also be a public plaza and an amusement arcade within the newly expanded amusement area. The same month, it was also announced that a 50-room boutique hotel was being planned for Coney Island. The hotel would be located within the former Shore Theater on Surf and Stillwell Avenues, which had been abandoned since 1978. If built, the hotel would be the first to be constructed in Coney Island in more than half a century. The city also expressed its intent to demolish the Abe Stark Rink and redevelop the site, as per the 2009 rezoning, though residents wanted NYC Parks to retain control over the site rather than sell it off to a private developer.
Coney Island has two amusement parks, Luna Park and Deno's Wonder Wheel Amusement Park. as well as several rides that are not incorporated into either theme park. These are owned and managed by several different companies and operate independently of each other Coney Island also has several other visitor attractions such as skeeball and ball tossing, as well as a sideshow, that contains shooting, throwing, and tossing skills. The area hosts renowned events as well. Coney Island's amusement area is one of a few in the United States that is not mostly owned by any one entity.:153
Coney Island contains three rides with landmark status. One is a New York City designated landmark, another is listed in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP), and a third is both a city landmark and a NRHP-listed landmark.
Other currently operating attractions include:
In addition to the rides in Coney Island's former amusement parks, the area had several dozen roller coasters that are now defunct. These include:
Coney Island also contains one defunct ride that is still standing, the Parachute Jump. Originally built as the Life Savers Parachute Jump at the 1939 New York World's Fair, this was the first ride of its kind. Patrons were hoisted 262 ft (80 m) in the air before being allowed to drop using guy-wired parachutes. The Parachute Jump was closed in 1964, but has been officially preserved: it was listed on the NRHP in 1980 and made a city landmark in 1989.:1
There is a broad public sand beach that starts at Sea Gate at West 37th Street, through the central Coney Island area and Brighton Beach, to the beginning of the community of Manhattan Beach, a distance of approximately 2.7 mi (4.3 km). The beach is continuous and is served for its entire length by the broad Riegelmann Boardwalk. A number of amusements are directly accessible from the land-side of the boardwalk, as is the aquarium and a variety of food shops and arcades.
The beaches in Coney Island used to be private until 1923, when the city bought all the land on the waterfront and created the Riegelmann Boardwalk and Beach. Today, only the sand beach inside Sea Gate is private; it is accessible solely to residents of that community.
The public beaches are maintained on a regular basis by the city. Because sand no longer naturally deposits on the beach, it is replenished in regular beach nourishment projects using dredged sand. The public beaches are open and free to use, though the boardwalk is closed during nights from 1 to 5 a.m. The beach area is divided into several sections by rock groynes that were built in the 1920s to prevent erosion.:15
There are several clubs that host activities on Coney Island's beach. The Coney Island Polar Bear Club consists of a group of people who swim at Coney Island throughout the winter months. Their most popular event is an annual swim on New Year's Day.:50 The beach also serves as the training grounds for the Coney Island Brighton Beach Open Water Swimmers (CIBBOWS), a group dedicated to promoting open water swimming. CIBBOWS hosts several open water swim races each year.
In addition, there are several public parks in the Coney Island neighborhood, operated by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation:
In June 2016, the Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island opened on the boardwalk, hosting several live musical acts as well as other events. It was constructed at the location of the Childs Restaurant, which was originally constructed in 1923, and was renovated when the amphitheater was being constructed. The rooftop part of the restaurant reopened in July 2016.
The nonprofit organization Coney Island USA also operates the Coney Island Museum, a collection of memorabilia that chronicles the history of the neighborhood. The museum opened in 1980, and is located at 1208 Surf Avenue near the intersection with West 12th Street. It charges a $5 admission fee per adult.
Coney Island USA sponsors various seasonal acts every year. In April, the organization hosts the Noisefest and the Congress of Curious Peoples. This is followed in May or June by the Coney Island Mermaid Parade, which takes place on Surf Avenue and the boardwalk, and features floats and performances. During August or September, Coney Island USA produces the Beard and Moustache Competition; Tattoo and Motorcycle Festival; and Coney Island Film Festival. The organization then hosts the Creepshow at the Freakshow, an interactive Halloween-themed event, in October.
The annual Cosme 5K Charity Run/Walk, supported by the Coney Island Sports Foundation, takes place on the Riegelmann Boardwalk toward the end of June.
A major national volleyball tournament hosted by the Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP), which is typically hosted on the West Coast of the U.S., was held in Coney Island starting in 2006. The AVP built a 4,000-seat stadium and twelve outer courts next to the boardwalk for the event. The tournament returned to Coney Island from 2007 through 2009, but was not hosted at Coney Island in 2010 due to a lack of money. When AVP tournaments resumed in Brooklyn in 2015, they were hosted at Brooklyn Bridge Park instead.
In 2009, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus performed in Coney Island for the first time since 1956. The event, titled The Coney Island Boom-A-Ring, was housed in tents that were located between the boardwalk and Surf Avenue. The following year, they returned to the same location with The Coney Island Illuscination.
Starting in May 2015, Thor Equities unveiled Coney Art Walls, a public art wall project curated by former Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles director Jeffrey Deitch and Thor CEO Joe Sitt. Located at 3050 Stillwell Avenue, the project featured work from more than 30 artists. Since then, the exhibition has been held every year.
Based on data from the 2010 United States Census, the combined population of Coney Island and Sea Gate was 31,965, a decrease of 2,302 (6.7%) from the 34,267 counted in 2000. Covering an area of 851.49 acres (344.59 ha), the neighborhood had a population density of 37.5 inhabitants per acre (24,000/sq mi; 9,300/km2).
The racial makeup of the neighborhood was 32.2% (10,307) African American, 30.9% (9,880) White, 8.7% (2,793) Asian, 0.2% (78) Native American, 0.0% (4) Pacific Islander, 0.2% (67) from other races, and 1.5% (467) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 26.2% (8,369) of the population. 82% of the population were high school graduates and 40% had a bachelor's degree or higher.:2
The entirety of Community Board 13 had 106,459 inhabitants as of NYC Health's 2018 Community Health Profile, with an average life expectancy of 80.4 years.:2, 20 This is lower than the median life expectancy of 81.2 for all New York City neighborhoods.:53 (PDF p. 84) Most inhabitants are adults, with 25% between the ages of 25–44, 27% between 45–64, and 22% who are at least 65 years old. The ratio of young and college-aged residents was lower, at 19% and 8% respectively.:2 Coney Island's elderly population, as a share of the area's total population, is higher than in other New York City neighborhoods.:6
As of 2016, the median household income in Community District 13 was $39,213. In 2018, an estimated 24% of Coney Island residents lived in poverty, compared to 21% in all of Brooklyn and 20% in all of New York City. One in eight residents (11%) were unemployed, compared to 9% in the rest of both Brooklyn and New York City. Rent burden, or the percentage of residents who have difficulty paying their rent, is 55% in Coney Island, slightly higher than the citywide and boroughwide rates of 52% and 51% respectively. Based on this calculation, as of 2018, Coney Island is not considered to be gentrifying.:7
Coney Island is patrolled by the NYPD's 60th Precinct, located at 2950 West Eighth Street. Transit District 34 is located at 1243 Surf Avenue, within the Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue subway station.
The 60th Precinct ranked 34th safest out of 69 city precincts for per-capita crime in 2010. Between 1993 and 2010, major crimes decreased by 72%, including a 76% decrease in robberies, 71% decrease in felony assaults, and 67% decrease in shootings. With a non-fatal assault rate of 51 per 100,000 people, Coney Island's rate of violent crimes per capita is less than that of the city as a whole. The incarceration rate of 168 per 100,000 people is about the same of that of the city as a whole.:8 The 60th Precinct has a lower crime rate than in the 1990s, with crimes across all categories having decreased by 84.6% between 1990 and 2017. The precinct saw 0 murders, 20 rapes, 1138 robberies, 232 felony assaults, 89 burglaries, 422 grand larcenies, and 46 grand larcenies auto in 2017.
Preterm and teenage births are slightly more common in Coney Island than in other places citywide. In Coney Island, there were 95 preterm births per 1,000 live births (compared to 87 per 1,000 citywide), and 20.2 teenage births per 1,000 live births (compared to 19.3 per 1,000 citywide), slightly higher than in the median neighborhood.:11 Coney Island has a high population of residents who are uninsured, or who receive healthcare through Medicaid. In 2018, this population of uninsured residents was estimated to be 14%, which is higher than the citywide rate of 12%.:14
The concentration of fine particulate matter, the deadliest type of air pollutant, in Coney Island is 0.0067 milligrams per cubic metre (6.7×10−9 oz/cu ft), lower than the citywide and boroughwide averages.:9 Nineteen percent of Coney Island residents are smokers, which is higher the city average of 14% of residents being smokers.:13 In Coney Island, 28% of residents are obese, 15% are diabetic, and 31% have high blood pressure—higher than the citywide averages of 24%, 11%, and 28% respectively.:16 In addition, 18% of children are obese, compared to the citywide average of 20%.:12
Ninety-two percent of residents eat some fruits and vegetables every day, which is slightly higher than the city's average of 87%. In 2018, 70% of residents described their health as "good," "very good," or "excellent," lower than the city's average of 78%.:13 For every supermarket in Coney Island, there are 21 bodegas.:10
Coney Island's ZIP Code is 11224. There are two United States Post Office branches in Coney Island. The Coney Island Station is located at 2727 Mermaid Avenue, and the Neptune Station is located at 532 Neptune Avenue.
Coney Island generally has a similar ratio of college-educated residents to the rest of the city. While 45% of the population have a college education or higher, 18% have less than a high school education and 37% are high school graduates or have some college education. By contrast, 40% of Brooklynites and 38% of city residents have a college education or higher.:6 The percentage of Coney Island students excelling in math has been increasing, though reading achievement has declined; math achievement rose from 53 percent in 2000 to 72 percent in 2011, but reading achievement fell from 57 to 55 percent within the same time period.
Coney Island's rate of elementary school student absenteeism is higher than the rest of New York City. In Coney Island, 26% of elementary school students missed twenty or more days per school year, compared to the citywide average of 20% of students.:24 (PDF p. 55):7
Coney Island is served by the New York City Department of Education, and students in the neighborhood are automatically "zoned" into the nearest public schools. Coney Island's zoned schools include PS 90 Edna Cohen School for K-5 education PS 329 (Pre K-5), PS 188 The Michael E. Berdy School (K-4), PS 100 Coney Island School (K-5), IS 303 Herbert S. Eisenberg, and PS/IS 288 The Shirley Tanyhill School (Pre-K-8). IS 239, the Mark Twain School for the Gifted and Talented (6–8), is a magnet school for gifted students, and it accepts students from around the city. In 2006, David Scharfenberg of The New York Times said, "Coney Island's elementary schools are a mixed lot, with only some exceeding citywide averages on the state's testing regimen."
There are no zoned high schools, though Abraham Lincoln High School, an academic high school, is in Coney Island. Rachel Carson High School for Coastal Studies is located in Coney Island.
The Brooklyn Public Library (BPL)'s Coney Island branch is located at 1901 Mermaid Avenue, near the intersection with West 19th Street. It opened in 1911 as an unmanned deposit station. Ten years later, it moved to the former Coney Island Times offices and became fully staffed. In 1954 another branch was built. According to BPL's website, the library was referred to as "the first-ever library built on stilts over the Atlantic Ocean." The branch was rebuilt in 2013 after being damaged in Hurricane Sandy.
Coney Island is served by three New York City Subway stations. The Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue station, which is the terminal of the D, F, N, and Q trains, is one of the largest elevated rapid transit stations in the world, with eight tracks serving four platforms. The entire station, built in 1917–1920 as a replacement for the former surface-level Culver Depot, was rebuilt in 2001–2004. The other subway stations within Coney Island are West Eighth Street–New York Aquarium, which is served by the F and Q trains, and Ocean Parkway, which is served by the Q train.
A bus terminal beneath the Stillwell Avenue station serves the B68 to Prospect Park, the B74 to Sea Gate, the B64 to Bay Ridge, and the B82 to Starrett City. Additionally, the B36 runs from Sea Gate to Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. The X28 and X38 provide express bus service to Manhattan.
The three main west-east arteries in the Coney Island community are, from north to south, Neptune Avenue, Mermaid Avenue, and Surf Avenue. Neptune Avenue crosses through Brighton Beach before becoming Emmons Avenue at Sheepshead Bay, while Surf Avenue becomes Ocean Parkway and then runs north toward Prospect Park. The cross streets in the Coney Island neighborhood proper are numbered with "West" prepended to their numbers, running from West 1st Street to West 37th Street at the border of Sea Gate (except for Cropsey Avenue, which becomes West 17th Street south of Neptune Avenue).
The Ocean Parkway bicycle path terminates in Coney Island. The Shore Parkway bikeway runs east along Jamaica Bay, and west and north along New York Harbor. Street bike lanes are marked in Neptune Avenue and other streets in Coney Island.
Coney Island has been featured in many novels, films, television shows, cartoons, and theatrical plays.:176 This is linked to its iconic status as a vacation destination. Various slapstick comedies and films have been set at Coney Island or allude to it. There have also been several television documentaries about the area's history.:137–142
The BMT Brighton Line, also known as the Brighton Beach Line, is a rapid transit line in the B Division of the New York City Subway in Brooklyn, New York City, United States. Local service is provided at all times by the Q train, but is joined by the B express train on weekdays. The Q's segment on the Brighton Line begins at the line's south end, Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue, and the Q travels the entire line, over the Manhattan Bridge south tracks to the BMT Broadway Line. The B begins at Brighton Beach and runs via the bridge's north tracks to the IND Sixth Avenue Line.Brighton Beach
Brighton Beach is a neighborhood in the southern portion of the New York City borough of Brooklyn, along the Coney Island peninsula and facing the Atlantic Ocean. According to the 2010 United States Census report, the Brighton Beach and Coney Island area, combined, had more than 110,000 residents. Brighton Beach is bounded by Coney Island proper at Ocean Parkway to the west, Manhattan Beach at Corbin Place to the east, Sheepshead Bay at the Belt Parkway to the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the south along the beach and boardwalk.
It is known for its high population of Russian-speaking immigrants, and as a summer destination for New York City residents due to its beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and its proximity to the amusement parks in Coney Island.Brooklyn Cyclones
The Brooklyn Cyclones are a minor league baseball team based in Brooklyn, New York, that plays in the Short-Season A classification New York–Penn League, affiliated with the New York Mets. The Cyclones play at MCU Park just off the Coney Island boardwalk in the New York City borough of Brooklyn.
In its franchise history, the team has won seven division titles. As the Brooklyn Cyclones, the team has won five division titles, made the playoffs eight times and in 2001, the Cyclones were declared co-league champions with the Williamsport Crosscutters, being forced to prematurely end their championship series due to the September 11 attacks, despite the Cyclones leading the series one game to none.Coney Island, Lough Neagh
Coney Island is an island in Lough Neagh, Northern Ireland. It is situated approximately 1 km from Maghery in County Armagh, is thickly wooded and of nearly 9 acres (36,000 m2) in area. It lies between the mouths of the River Blackwater and the River Bann in the south-west corner of Lough Neagh. Boat trips to the island are available at weekends from Maghery Country Park or Kinnego Marina. The island is owned by the National Trust and managed on their behalf by Craigavon Borough Council. Coney Island Flat is a rocky outcrop adjacent to the island. Although Samuel Lewis called Coney Island the only island in County Armagh, Armagh's section of Lough Neagh also includes Croaghan Island, as well as the marginal cases of Padian, Rathlin Island and Derrywarragh Island.Coney Island, Singapore
Coney Island, alternatively known as Pulau Serangoon, is a 133-hectare island located off the northeastern coast of Singapore within the town of Punggol, between Pulau Ubin to its northeast and the mainland to its southwest.Land reclamation works were carried out on the island from 1975 to the 1990s, as there were plans to build residential buildings on the southern part of the island. The works narrowed the channel between Punggol and the island to 100m. Still, in spite of this small distance, motor launches had to be specially hired to reach the island until the opening of Coney Island Park, linked to the main island by two bridges on its western and eastern ends.Coney Island (1943 film)
Coney Island is a 1943 American Technicolor musical film released by Twentieth Century Fox and starring Betty Grable in one of her biggest hits. A "gay nineties" musical (set in that time period) it also featured George Montgomery, Cesar Romero, and Phil Silvers, was choreographed by Hermes Pan, and was directed by Walter Lang. Betty Grable also starred in the 1950 remake, Wabash Avenue.
In 1944, the year after the film was released, it was nominated for an Oscar for Alfred Newman in the category of Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture
The film is also known as: Coney Island in Sweden, L'île aux plaisirs in France, L'isola delle sirene in Italy, San oneiro in Greece, Se necesitan maridos in Spain and Tivolin kaunotar in Finland.Coney Island (1991 film)
Coney Island is a 1991 documentary film that traces the history of Coney Island, the westernmost part of the barrier islands of Long Island, New York. The film covers the island's 1609 discovery by Henry Hudson, its 1870s incarnation as a respectable beach destination for city-dwellers and showcase of the new developments ushered in by the machine age, the early 20th century, when amusement parks and innovative attractions attracted hundreds of thousands of people each day, and the gradual demise of the amusements.
The film is narrated by Philip Bosco. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and broadcast nationally on PBS as part of the American Experience program in February 1991.
On-camera appearances include Al Lewis, Vincent Gardenia, Eli Wallach, Elliot Willensky, Frederick Fried and Mae Timpano. Voice-over actors include Judd Hirsch, Nathan Lane, John Mahoney, Jerry Orbach, George Plimpton, Lois Smith, Frances Sternhagen and Andrei Codrescu.Coney Island (Massachusetts)
Coney Island is an abandoned island located in Massachusetts Bay in Salem, Massachusetts. It has light growth, with a small salt marsh.Coney Island Cyclone
The Coney Island Cyclone (better known as simply the Cyclone) is a historic wooden roller coaster in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn, New York City. It opened on June 26, 1927, and was originally part of the Astroland theme park. The Cyclone is now part of Luna Park. The coaster was declared a New York City landmark on July 12, 1988, and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 26, 1991.
The Cyclone operated for more than four decades before it started to deteriorate. By the early 1970s, the city planned to scrap the ride. However,
on June 18, 1975, Dewey and Jerome Albert, owners of Astroland, entered into an agreement with New York City to operate the ride. The roller coaster was refurbished in the 1974 off-season and reopened on July 3, 1975. Astroland Park continued to invest millions over the years in the upkeep of the Cyclone. After Astroland closed in 2008, Carol Hill Albert, president of Cyclone Coasters, continued to operate it under a lease agreement with the city. In 2011, Luna Park took over operation of the Cyclone.Coney Island Velodrome
The Coney Island Velodrome was a mid-sized sports arena in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn in New York City, USA. Designed as a bicycle racing venue, the drome featured a 1/8-mile wooden oval track with 45° banked corners and seating for 10,000. It also hosted outboard midgets into 1939. Located next to the BMT rail terminal at Neptune Avenue & West 12th Street, the venue played host to sports ranging from motorcycle races to boxing and football.
The drome was a popular venue for both Coney Island vacationers and New York City residents. At the height of popularity for both American bicycle racing and boxing in the 1920s, Coney Island drome was host to regional and state championship bicycle races, and boxing heroes including Rocky Marciano, Joe Louis, Jersey Joe Walcott, and Sugar Ray Robinson.
As the Great Depression began, bicycle racing on the Eastern Seaboard collapsed. On August 3, 1930, the velodrome was destroyed by fire but due to its location and use was rebuilt. The last event was an Old-Timers reunion and bicycle race on September 4, 1950. Coney Island Velodrome was torn down and replaced with high-rise housing.
Included in New York City bid for the 2012 Summer Olympics were plans to rebuild a velodrome elsewhere on Coney Island, but the plans were scrapped when New York lost the bid to London in 2005.Coney Island hot dog
A Coney Island Hot Dog (or Coney Dog or Coney) is a hot dog in a bun topped with a savory meat sauce and sometimes other toppings. It is often offered as part of a menu of dishes of Greek origin and classic American 'diner' dishes and often at Coney Island restaurants. It is largely a phenomenon related to immigration from Greece and Macedonia to the United States in the early 20th century.Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue (New York City Subway)
Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue (also known as Coney Island Terminal and signed on some trains as either Coney Island or Stillwell Avenue) is a New York City Subway terminal in Coney Island, Brooklyn, acting as the railroad-south terminus for the D, F, N, and Q trains. The large facility, originally built in 1919, was designed at a time when Coney Island was the primary summer resort area for the New York metropolitan area, with all of the rail lines in southern Brooklyn funneling service to the area. It is one of the largest elevated transportation terminals in the world.
The station has eight tracks and four island platforms, with trains entering from both compass north and south. It is located at the corner of Stillwell and Surf Avenues in Coney Island, the site of the former West End Terminal. Geographically, the station is the southernmost terminal in the New York City Subway system.Culver Line (surface)
The Culver Line, Gravesend Avenue Line, or McDonald Avenue Line was a surface public transit line in Brooklyn, New York City, United States, running along McDonald Avenue and built by the Prospect Park and Coney Island Railroad. Most of its main line has been essentially replaced by the IND Culver Line of the New York City Subway.
The company originally owned a streetcar line - the Vanderbilt Avenue Line - from Prospect Park north to downtown Brooklyn.List of New York City Subway yards
The New York City Transit Authority operates a total of 24 rail yards for the New York City Subway system. There are 10 active A Division yards (excluding one yard that has been demolished), 11 active B Division yards, two shared yards, one yard for the Staten Island Railway, and two non-revenue equipment yards. Of these yards, rolling stock are assigned to seven A Division yards and seven B Division yards. Within the yards are 14 maintenance and cleaning facilities, and two yards (207th Street and Coney Island) perform heavy maintenance and overhaul.Luna Park, Coney Island (1903)
Luna Park was an amusement park in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York that opened in 1903. Built partly on the grounds of Sea Lion Park (1895), it was one of the three original iconic large parks built on Coney Island, the other two being Steeplechase Park (1897) and Dreamland (1904). Luna Park was located on the north side of Surf Avenue on a site between 8th street, 12th street and Neptune Avenue. The park was mostly destroyed by a fire in 1944.MCU Park
MCU Park (formerly KeySpan Park) is a minor league baseball stadium in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn, New York City, USA. The home team is the New York Mets-affiliated Brooklyn Cyclones of the New York–Penn League. The NYU Violets Baseball team began playing at MCU Park in 2015, and the New York Cosmos Soccer Club of the NASL moved in for the 2017 NASL season. Official seating capacity is 7,000, though the Cyclones will sell up to 2,500 more standing room tickets. Prior to 2016, the capacity was 7,500 plus 2,500 standing room.
Features include a concourse with free-standing concession buildings and overhanging fluorescent lamps in different colors, evoking an amusement park atmosphere. In addition, the park overlooks the Atlantic Ocean as well as the famous Parachute Jump in right field, and the landmarks Wonder Wheel and Coney Island Cyclone in left field.
MCU Park is accessible via New York City Subway at the Coney Island – Stillwell Avenue subway station, served by the D, F, N, and Q trains.Sheepshead Bay Race Track
Sheepshead Bay Race Track was an American Thoroughbred horse racing facility built on the site of the Coney Island Jockey Club at Sheepshead Bay, New York.Steeplechase Park
Steeplechase Park was an amusement park in the Coney Island area of Brooklyn, New York created by George C. Tilyou (1862–1914) which operated from 1897 to 1964. It was the first of the three original iconic large parks built on Coney Island, the other two being Luna Park (1903) and Dreamland (1904). Steeplechase was Coney Island's longest lasting park. Unlike Dreamland, which burned in a fire in 1911, and Luna Park which, despite early success, saw its profitability disappear during the Great Depression, Steeplechase had kept itself financially profitable. The Tilyou family had been able to adapt the park to the changing times, bringing in new rides and new amusements to Steeplechase such as the Parachute Jump.West End Line (Brooklyn surface)
The West End Line or New Utrecht Avenue Line was a surface transit line in Brooklyn, New York City, United States, running along New Utrecht Avenue and other streets between Coney Island and Sunset Park. Built by the Brooklyn, Bath and Coney Island Railroad as a steam line, it became a trolley line, along which elevated trains ran until the new elevated BMT West End Line opened. This route is no longer part of any bus line; its southern part (south of Bath Beach) was part of a bus route (the B64, which replaced the 86th Street Line trolleys, until 2010). In 2013, the B64 route to Coney Island was restored.
Coney Island attractions and neighborhoods
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