Brooklyn beep’s Coney Island amphitheater plans slammed

From left: Marty Markowitz and 3052-3078 West 21st Street
From left: Marty Markowitz and 3052-3078 West 21st Street

Coney Island residents slammed Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz’s plan to bring an amphitheater to a 90-year-old former restaurant on West 21st Street, citing concerns about noise and traffic at a hearing.

The beep’s plan involves knocking a hole in the wall of the Childs Building at 3052-3078 West 21st Street and installing a stage, then creating a semi-circular seating bowl on a city-owned parcel next door that would seat 5,100.

But despite promises to cover the concert space and keep the noise from disturbing locals, area residents expressed concern that such a plan would really work.

“Nobody in creation can convince me that a fabric can control the noise that is going to permeate the entire area,” Carol DeMartino, a Seagate resident, told the Brooklyn Paper.

Others cited worries about traffic headed to the amphitheater, saying it would strain streets already choked with cars headed to amusement parks and Cyclones baseball games.

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“How are we going to have 5,000 more seats?” Sheila Smalls, a People’s Playground resident, remarked to the Brooklyn Paper. “We won’t be able to get in and out of our own neighborhood.”

Others pressed for a community benefits contract that would guarantee well-paid, full-time, year-round jobs for area residents, as well as regular public access to the building. Without such a provision, residents said, many Coney Islanders would never even get to see the inside of the new venue.

A spokesman for Markowitz at the hearing declined to comment to the Brooklyn Paper, but a representative from iStar Financial, which owns the Childs Building, told the Paper that the project would give the local real estate market a lift.

Community Board 13’s zoning and land use committee has asked the city to examine the amphitheater’s likely impact on area parking and to consider the possibility of providing a shuttle bus to the new facility. [Brooklyn Paper] Julie Strickland