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Marty loves Bloomy’s Coney rezoney

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Borough President Markowitz has come out strongly in favor of Mayor Bloomberg’s controversial plan for redeveloping Coney Island with new amusements and housing.

For months, Markowitz had been tight-lipped about the mayor’s plan to spend untold hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to rezone 19 blocks, build new infrastructure and acquire land near the Boardwalk for a new amusement park ringed by privately built hotels, restaurants and tourist attractions like a water park or movie theaters.

But on Wednesday, the Beep broke the silence and embraced Bloomberg’s vision, though he suggested some modifications.

“I commend the mayor … for prioritizing the creation of a year-round affordable Coney Island for the 21st century,” Markowitz said in a statement. “By adopting the following changes to the rezoning plan, we will ensure a new Coney Island distinguished by vibrant, visible amusement activity and guaranteed awe-inspiring design.”

The mayor’s rezoning plan covers the existing, under-performing amusement area from the Cyclone roller coaster to Keyspan Park, and areas to the west and north, where the city says that developers will build 4,500 apartment units.

Markowitz’s approval follows a different type of support from Community Board 13, which added recommendations that were favorable the area’s main landowner, Joe Sitt, a locally unpopular developer who says he wants to build his own amusement park in Coney Island, but is now negotiating with the city to buy his land.

The Bloomberg Administration expressed dissatisfaction with CB13’s resolution, but had no problem with Markowitz’s changes, which include:

• increasing the required amount of attractions built on West 10th Street, Surf Avenue and Stillwell Avenue.

• stipulating that there will not be “one overarching manager of the amusements,” like Six Flags.

• empowering a committee to ensure snazzy and iconic architecture, signage, lighting throughout the amusement area.

• requirements that construction use union labor, pay livable wages and give preference to Coney Island residents.

• discounts in the People’s Playground to neighborhood residents.

The Borough President’s vote comes shortly after the city and Sitt unveiled highly publicized temporary amusements. The mayor’s office booked Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey’s circus for a limited engagement, and Sitt has arranged for interim rides, sideshows and a flea market for vacant lots he owns.

The City Planning Commission will review the Coney Island proposal next, where it’s expected to be approved before the project heads for final approval in the City Council, where Councilman Domenic Recchia (D–Coney Island), a chum of Sitt, could obstruct the mayor’s vision.

Updated 5:33 pm, April 30, 2009: Story was updated to provide more context to Jesse Masyr's quote.
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Reader Feedback

P S from Coney Island says:
Marty Markowitz is a crook plain and simple. He is trying to push an ampitheatre in Asser Levey Park against the communitys wishes. just as Dom Recchia has pocketed millions of dollars from Mayor Bloomberg for his personal projects Marty Markowitz is trying to gain favor for his own coffers. A real disgrace these politicians. They never ask or do what the community wants. Brooklyn politicians like Markowitz are the new MAFIA.
April 30, 2009, 4:33 am
jerry from brighton beach/ coney island says:
Marty Markowitz is a loud, obnoxious, political opportunist. If he was really for the Mayor's plan he would move the Marty Markowitz "Potato Chip" Amphitheater to the Coney Island Amusement area proper & not put in in a residential high rise area( with no parking) such as Seaside Park. This would spark a great revival of bringing crowds to Coney Island for Music Concerts, Restaurants etc. Let it be known that the Mayor is giving $ 10 million dollars towards the Marty Markowitz Amphitheater, so that's why Marty {the loud obnoxious pol) is signing off on the Mayor's plan. The other problem with the amphitheater is that it is in violation of the Sound Permit issued by NYPD. There is a law called the 500 foot law. No sound is allowed within 500 feet of a church, synagogue, school or hospital. There are not one but two Jewish Centers within the 500 foot lawas to where the Amphitheater is being built. So it is clearly in violation of this law.
April 30, 2009, 10:32 am
freddy from slope says:
just because it smells funny both ways..

i am more wary of politcians than most, but maybe there needs to be better ammo to shoot this down.

is a "jewish center" a church, synagogue, school or hospital?

better nail that one down before you invest too much time down that avenue.
April 30, 2009, 11:30 am
jerry from brighton beach/ coney island says:
To Freddy from slope : For your information a "Jewish Center " is a synonym for "Synagogue."
April 30, 2009, 12:08 pm
Charles from Brooklyn says:
As far as I am concerned, when Marty Markowitz supports something, it is a sign that political corruption is afoot. Until we have serious and honest Democrates running this city, any part of this city is up for sale to the highest bidder. I believe we can start by voting out every politician that supported the repeal of term limits.
April 30, 2009, 12:39 pm

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