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Coney Island strip mall?

The guys who gave us the city’s only drive-through Starbucks (below) now want to build this modern-ish strip mall on Cropsey Avenue, the gateway to Coney Island.
The Brooklyn Paper
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The man who brought the city’s only drive-through Starbucks to Cropsey Avenue is bringing more retail to the dreary Gateway to Coney Island — and he says it might kick-start the drag’s transition into a shopping destination.

Developer Marc Esrig is building a glassy, 14,000-square-foot retail space with a parking lot on Cropsey Avenue at Hart Place, directly across the street from the Starbucks and Linens ’n Things that he developed in 2004, and down the block from a Home Depot.

Construction could be finished as early as mid-July and Esrig says he is in negotiations with three national chains as prospective tenants: a women’s clothing store, a home furnishings store, and a restaurant (which he promises will not be a McDonald’s or a Subway).

“You’re going to start seeing that natural progression where auto body shops get forced out,” said Esrig of Vista Realty Partners. “That’s not to say that Prada or Coach is moving in tomorrow, but maybe you’ll have a Dunkin’ Donuts move in, or a pizza place, or a Radio Shack.”

And as the redevelopment of Coney Island inches forward, some Coney officials are excited about Esrig’s plans to bring a clothing shop, a home furnishings store, and a restaurant to a key access road for the amusement district.

“Cropsey Avenue is becoming busy and all of those things might go over really well,” said Community Board 13 District Manager Chuck Reichenthal.

“The local diner — which was only a block away — closed down, so a restaurant sounds like a potentially good idea,” he said.

But Dick Zigun, Coney Island’s unofficial mayor, isn’t as keen about Esrig’s plans.

“In an ideal Coney Island, Cropsey Avenue between Neptune Avenue and Hart Place would see large parking garages on either side and the ground floor of such garages would be trolley barns and waiting stations for a revival of the Surf Avenue trolleys,” Zigun said.

“Such parking garages would be useful for the amusement park and also serve the unofficial shopping mall that is already replacing the auto body stores,” he said.

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Reader Feedback

LISA CRUMB from CONEY ISLAND says:
LEAVE IT ALONE!!!!! IT SHOULD BE LANDMARKED NOT DESTROYED BY HYPER CAPITALIST!!!!
ITS FOR THE PEOPLE, THE MASSES TO ENJOY!!!

STOP DESTROYING OUR CITY IT's ALREADY OVER DEVELOPED & OVER HOMOGINIZED!!
DON"T DESTROY CONEY ISLAND!!!!!!!!!!!!

SAVE IT FOR THE PEOPLE!!!
HAVE A HEART YOU OVERLY GREEDY UNCARING OVER DEVELOPERS
STOP PUSHING OUT NEW YORKERS & WHAT WE LOVE!!!!
June 6, 2008, 4:31 pm
cliff/wizard from staten island ny says:
just leave it alone pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeee. we all need another mall like we need someone like obomas wife in the white house.
June 6, 2008, 5:11 pm
Michael from Bay Ridge says:
This is really cheap and short sighted development. Did Kings Plaza turn Mill Basin into a shopping destination? No.
And to Cliff from Staten Island, you live in a boro that looks like a cheap suburb in New Jersey. you may be fine with that, but would you and all the Staten Island developers keep your hands off of the nice parts of Brooklyn. We don't need you guys tearing down Brooklyn's charm for a quick buck.
June 10, 2008, 11:53 am

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