The revisions, included in a March 11th approval vote by CB13's Housing, Zoning, and Community Development Committee, challenge the city's proposal to remake the outdated but beloved amusement area and its surrounding neighborhood.
The New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) has proposed a $2.5 billion, 19-block rezone of Coney Island that would transform the neighborhood into a modern-age city-owned amusement park surrounded by private hotels, retail stores, and a complex of residential buildings with 4,500 housing units.
To go ahead with its plan, however, the city first has to resolve its several-year land battle with private developer Thor Equities. The company and the city each own roughly half of the nine-plus-acre amusement park zone, and both parties have competing visions for its future - a conflict that could be resolved if the city uses eminent domain to acquire the entire amusement park zone.
One of CB13' principal revisions was a ban on eminent domain in any future development of Coney Island. In another recommended change sure to irk EDC planners, the community board suggested dropping plans for a new street, to be called Wonder Wheel Way, that would connect the area's three iconic amusement rides: the Ferris Wheel, Parachute Jump, and Cyclone roller coaster.
In an unusual mix, the community board also suggested several revisions that would allow for more, not less, development in other parts of the neighborhood.
CB13 voted to reject a city plan to set aside 12 acres for parkland space, instead suggesting it be used for development projects in the future. Another community board revision, perhaps the most controversial, would allow new retail stores in the area 10,000 square feet of space. The city's proposal would limit stores to 2,500 square feet.
The Coney Island rezone plan now moves to a full vote by CB13, before being reviewed by the Borough President, City Planning Commission, and City Council.