Coney Island: Still not too "tidy"

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

Skeptics who feared that replacing or freshening the woebegone Boardwalk shops, restaurants and rides would mean the Disneyfication of Coney Island — a swapping of its distinctive sizzle for a more standardized glitz — may have to wait awhile to see their fears realized. While the overhaul engineered by the city is evident throughout the seaside neighborhood, Coney Island has so far avoided becoming too sanitized and tidy, many patrons say.

Read more from The New York Times.

Vater's avatar

“They’re trying to draw a different crowd, Manhattan people, people with money, tourists,” he said. “They got rid of the hookers, drug dealers, the people who harass you. The downside is there are some nice people who have been coming here for years who can’t afford the new Coney Island.”

If that's the only negative that can be gleaned from the redevelopment, I consider it a huge win. Sounds like they're doing it right.

kpjb's avatar

That's dissapointing. Seems they could have just upgraded to more expensive hookers.


bjames's avatar

Disney's a pretty successful theme park brand, right? So isn't wise to WANT to emulate Disney?

I for one like to be in tidy and sanitized places. They are more comfortable. These complainers seriously have a screw loose. There is by no means any shortage of filth in New York.

Vater's avatar

I tend to agree with most of what the long-time Coney dwellers are saying. The redevelopment has boosted attendance, freshened up the overall look, and brought in a better crowd, all without losing the overall feel of what Coney has been for decades. Plopping a Disney-like experience onto a few blocks of a pretty crummy section of the city wouldn't work; however if it did, it would then cease to be Coney Island.

Lord Gonchar's avatar

I've said countless times on the podcast (remember those?) that much of the charm of Coney was it's "grittiness" - I still think so.

Never been to the new Coney, so I can't compare, but I do understand where the complaints stem from to a degree.

They can try to put lipstick on the lovely pig that is Coney Island, but...

MidwavePC's avatar

The biggest problem Coney Island still has is the politics that turn it into an annual turf war. For some perspective, please watch the indie-film "Last Summer At Coney Island".

Zipperfilm's avatar

We have just finished a film that chronicles the problem with rezoning Coney Island. It's hard to understand why there was so much controversy, and no one would argue that Coney Island needed better infrastructure and new rides. But the heart of Coney Island was gutted in the process. A trailer will be up this week. Check our facebook page at Of interest to fans of Coaster Buzz: a CoasterBuzz podcast can be heard in the film's soundtrack! 

ZIPPER: Coney Island's Last Wild Ride

Still not a place I'd have much interest in ever returning to.

And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun

john peck's avatar

I'm still willing to pay a little more for a Premium Hooker.

Last edited by john peck,

Sounds like an expensive beer.

"I'll have a Stout Hooker, and let me get a Dark Hooker for my buddy..."

My author website:

sws's avatar

Personally, I hate to stand in line and wait for a hooker, that's why I always purchase a flesh pass.

Last edited by sws,

Ew. Lol

I really wanted to go to Coney Island for years, but the only person that knew that area of New York well enough to go with me wouldn't go because she said it was way too shady. I am hoping to get there very soon now that it has been cleaned up a little bit.

"Look at us spinning out in the madness of a roller coaster" - Dave Matthews Band

Just went there 3 months ago to check out Scream Zone and Luna Park. There is a lot of construction going on. A lot of the old businesses on the boardwalk have closed down and being replaced. It still looks and feels like the 'old' Coney Island with far less people harassing you. I really cant wait until next summer when a lot of the new development opens up..

You won't see me coming...

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