Activists Livid Over NYC’s Efforts to Replace Historic Coney Island Boardwalk with Cement and Plastic


coney-islandBrooklyn, NY – A number of activists believe that the City completely struck out with its plans for one of Brooklyn’s most prized possessions – the boardwalk.

If the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation gets its way, most of the famed wooden boardwalk that runs through Brighton Beach, Coney Island, and Seagate, would be replaced by plastic and concrete. The project was underway but has since been delayed by a lawsuit filed in the Brooklyn Supreme Court on July 12th by various concerned activist groups. The lawsuit claims that the City failed to conduct an adequate environmental review and that the new design will cost taxpayers more in the long run.

Ben Akselrod, candidate for State Assembly in the 45th district, for one, firmly stands behind the lawsuit, and as Assemblyman would do whatever it takes to preserve the boardwalk’s historical integrity.

“Brighton Beach’s section of the boardwalk has already fallen victim to the City’s misguided plans,” Akselrod told Cracks are already present on recently cemented parts of the strip.  Akselrod is running for the district that covers Brighton Beach but is concerned with the entire project.

Rather than spend the $7.4 million allotted to the project on concrete, Akselrod wants to see that money go toward rehabilitating the boardwalk, while also preserving its classic charm. “The boardwalk needs to be restored. No one is saying it doesn’t.  However I, like many others, want to keep the look that people have fallen in love with for decades.”

Other concerns that activists have besides aesthetics include the safety of cement and plastic.  Cement, which does not drain well, increases the risk of floods and icy walkways. This is a serious concern for boardwalk goers, who already prefer wood because of the less stress it puts on their bodies.  Some also argue that cement, as compared to wood, gets much hotter causing increased energy consumption, air pollution, and inferior water quality among a host of other things.

{Noam Newscenter}


  1. Whoever thinks cement lasts longer than treated wood has never owned a house. Cement looks durable, but where you have a freeze-and-thaw cycle, it’s anything but. And for the many older people who use the boardwalk, ice would be a real hazard. Think of the lawsuits the city would have to pay out. In this case, cheaper is more expensive in the long run.

    And plastic??!! For the iconic Boardwalk? Puleeze!