UPDATE September 28, 2012…The date of the hearing is now set for Thursday, October 25th. According to an email from Rob Burstein, all of the other information- location, time, etcetera-mentioned below remains the same.
After the Public Design Commission’s shameful approval of the New York City Parks Department’s boondoggle of a Concretewalk, we’re happy to know the Coney Island Boardwalk will get its day in court next month. “We desperately need you and all of us to SHOW UP ON
OCTOBER 4th OCTOBER 25!” wrote Rob Burstein of the Coney-Brighton Boardwalk Alliance on Friday night in an email to supporters of keeping the boards in the Boardwalk. “Please take this one morning to stand — or in this case sit — with us, and collectively let’s once more attempt to save this beautiful icon!”
In July, the advocacy groups Friends of the Boardwalk and Coney-Brighton Boardwalk Alliance along with neighborhood residents filed a lawsuit against the New York City Parks Department to stop the agency from replacing additional sections of the Coney Island Boardwalk with concrete and plastic wood. A ten-foot-wide Concrete Lane for so-called “emergency vehicles” and an adjoining Plasticwalk had been unanimously approved by the Public Design Commission for a pilot project in Brighton Beach. Sections of the Boardwalk in Brighton Beach and Coney’s west end near Sea Gate are already a Concretewalk. You can see what it looks like here and here and the photo below.
According to Burstein’s email…
As most of you know, the law firm of Goodwin-Proctor is representing us in a lawsuit against the Parks Department. The suit alleges that they failed to perform the required environmental impact studies to assess the numerous negative impacts that their intended plan will have for our community and all who make use of the Boardwalk were it to be implemented, and asks that the Court compel them to do so before going forward.
We need a huge number of people to show up to achieve our desired effect. There are few times in life when by virtue of our presence we may affect the outcome of something we care deeply about. This is one of those times.”
The hearing is scheduled for Thursday, October 4th, starting at 9:45am. The case will be heard in Kings County Supreme Court at 360 Adams Street in downtown Brooklyn near the Court Street station. The Hearing Part number is 38 and the judge hearing the case is Martin Solomon. Burstein asks supporters to meet outside the hearing room at 9:30am sharp and then enter and sit together. “My cell phone number is 718-449-7017, in case you want to call me about something between now and the 4th, or on that day,” he says. “Please send me an email letting me know that you’ll be coming, firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Let’s hope the Supreme Court hearing room is bigger than the one at the Public Design Commission, which was not designed to accommodate the public. Many of us were left standing in the hall and missed some of the testimony. You can read ATZ’s report on that charade of a hearing in “The Coney Island-Brighton Beach Concretewalk Blues” (ATZ, March 22, 2012)
UPDATE September 11, 2012:
Is Maryland’s Ocean City, which has a new wood Boardwalk, more innovative than NYC? Read Todd Dobrin and Ron Bursteins’s op-ed in Monday’s New York Daily News. Dobrin and Burstein are founders of the two advocacy groups who are bringing the case against the Concretewalk to court.
Related posts on ATZ…
July 13, 2012: Coney Island Boardwalk Advocates Sue Parks Department
February 29, 2012: Exclusive: Coney Boardwalk Group’s Letter to PDC Rebuts Parks
January 24, 2012: Parks Postpones Do-Or-Die Hearing on Coney Concretewalk