November 25, 2008 at 8:50 pm Leave a comment

Jones Beach and the PNC Bank Arts Center could soon be facing stiff competition from Coney Island in attracting A-list acts, but the cost to taxpayers will be steep – $64 million.

City officials confirmed that the price tag for a planned 5,000-seat amphitheater at Asser Levy Park near the fabled boardwalk has jumped $24 million since Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz announced a $40 million plan to build it nearly two years ago.

The Beep says he’s putting his money where his mouth is, using $54 million of his office’s capital improvement funds. The mayor’s office would kick in $10 million.

Community Board 13 and the city’s Arts Commission still have to sign off on the project.

Markowitz uses an existing amphitheater to host his annual Seaside Concert Series, which featured six programs this summer.

The new facility is expected to host many more events, but residents are split over whether it is best for the neighborhood.

“Why is this being stuck right next to a high-rise residential neighborhood? It should be built west of the park in the amusement area, where commercial use belongs,” said Ida Sanoff, a former member of Community Board 13.

Dick Zigun, the so-called mayor of Coney Island and founder of its popular Circus Sideshow, meanwhile said, “This will be a tremendous asset and a real first-class draw.”

The project would replace the existing 66,000-square-foot amphitheater, which takes up 1.5 acres, with a modern 87,200-square-foot facility.

The project would expand to about eight acres, including a popular lawn area that would be revitalized and set aside for 3,000 additional removable seats.

New York Post

Entry filed under: Brooklyn, Go Coastal, Public Waterfront. Tags: , , , , .

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