Southern Brooklyn

Marty: No More Play Time At Asser-Levy Park

Artist's renderings of the proposed amphitheater, courtesy of Grimshaw Architects

Newly revealed details about the planned $64-million concert venue in Asser Levy Seaside Park are adding fuel to the controversy about its establishment. The amphitheater will take up nearly three-quarters of the park’s recreation area, leaving roughly the size of half a football field for neighborhood children.

A large portion of the new venue at Surf Avenue between Ocean Parkway and West 5th Street will be an elevated lawn reserved for a viewing area for outdoor concerts. But when not in use, Parks Department officials say there are no plans to allow sports.

“The elevated lawn isn’t being designed for sports,” Parks Department spokesperson Phil Abramson told Courier-Life. “It will likely be a passive open space for relaxing.”

According to Courier-Life, the closest field suitable for playing sports is Kaiser Park, about 1.5 miles away.

The city apparently is not expecting an insurmountable challenge from the public, despite outcry against Marty Markowitz’s potentially legacy-busting proposal. The borough president is already soliciting operators for the amphitheater ahead of a required environmental assessment study.

After much delay, Community Board 13’s Beaches, Parks and Recreation Committee will finally discuss the future of Asser-Levy Park next week in the committee’s first meeting in a year.

Make your voice heard by attending the meeting at Coney Island Hospital (2601 Ocean Pkwy between Avenue Z and Shore Parkway in Coney Island, (718) 266-3001) on April 21 at 7:30 pm.

Comment policy


  1. I used to live across the street from this park, and I think this is Awful. It's a nice park actually, very peaceful and green. I sincerely hope this does not go through.

  2. Where is all this money coming from? -our bloated real estate taxes or the proposed double digit hike in our water bills?

  3. I grew up picnicking here with the family and watching my dad play soccer. This is a nice large patch of green in the nabe. i'd hate to see it go. Why can't they incorporate some more wide open green space?

  4. Why not build the thing on the deserted lot next to Keyspan (or whatever they call it now) Park? Or figure out how to put it in the ball park itself? The ball park is rarely used, the deserted lot is never used, there are many subway lines there, and there is plenty of parking, particularly for those willing to pay.

    Either certainly beats depriving people of Asser Levy Park which is better used for recreation, sports and relaxation.

  5. how can someone that comes to this area once a year for a few hours know whats good for this area. this is a joke. he wants to build this thing so he gets some crazy kickbacks thats the only thing that makes sense out of this. i have said it before regarding this space you can take a fraction of that money and refurbish whats existing and make the park more activity friendly. people play soccer and football here every weekend. why would you want to take that away unless you are getting paid to. there is no reason to build this thing here.

  6. The park concerts were Marty's ticket to the big time. He hosted them when he was still a political wannabe.

    This project is to be Marty's monument to himself. The arrogance here is unacceptable.

    The arrogance has changed my mind. I vote no!

  7. I'm sorry but this is a horrible horrible and yes horrible idea. There is no PARKING in walking distance to support the crowds for that type of facility. The area gets bad enough in the summer as it is when concerts are played there now!

    The area doesn't even NEED a new Amphitheater. You could take a FRACTION of that money and renovate the entire park. The existing Amphitheater structure is fine if its given some touch ups. They could even add a retractable tent over the field so concerts could still be held in the rain. But the field should still be open for play. You can't take a park away from the kids like that. It's just wrong.

    Keyspan Park is a perfect venue for Rock Concerts. It's been done before and it should be done again and more often. The place already has seating, parking, concessions. They can bring out a wide screen display to point at the sand and allow people to listen (and watch) the the music from the beach for free!

    THAT is something that would make the area grow! It's something that will keep people IN Coney Island. How much do you wanna bet that 75% of the people that go to Asser Levy for the musical performances don't even realize that the Legendary Coney Island is 2 blocks away?

    Marty, if you want to leave a Legacy then go make a few million Dollars, buy some land and build something. Don't screw the community because of your god damned ego.

  8. I agree. But that's what the city has done at parks again and again – spent extraordinary amounts of money to 'redo' them and then most likely will need upkeep and private interests involved to maintain. what you state also happened at washington square park where the city spent (are spending) over $30 million when the park needed a true renovation – not a complete overhaul – which would have cost much less and caused much less acrimony. sound familiar?

    I haven't been a fan of Marty Markowitz in a long time – this just completes it. I also agree it's about his ego – like Atlantic Yards which he (of anyone) should have realized was a bad idea for Brooklyn.

    Why has the Community Board Parks Committee not met in over a year? Hard to imagine there weren't other things to discuss – unless Markowitz has been putting pressure on them.

  9. We look forward to visiting Asser Levy Park/area in the summer…shop, eat, lounge, ride and watch a concert. Always respectful, and mindful of those who reside in the area. This proposal is a tough call – leaving it the way it is, is fine – why fix what isn't broke? – yet there could be year round benefits if the area is developed. I'm sure this is Marty's idea. Ditto for the new Luna Park. The person who suggested using the field Guiliani tore down the ThunderBolt to build (shamelessly I might add) is an interesting idea! Coney West is what I think it's called. But the argument that becuz' of a nearby synagogue, concerts cannot be held on Fridays is absurd to me …. you can go to synagogue – we'll go and enjoy what we want. To each is own.

  10. Thisis just what we needed! I would buy tickets to shows thwere all the time.
    It will improve the neighborhood and create jobs.

  11. What this is, is a mauling of a small neighborhood park that happens to be in the “safe” side of Coney Island, and is likely the underlying motivation to squeeze this in, and the community out when there's tons more space and opportunity just a short distance away in the heart of Coney Island. Shame on Marty Markowitz, someone I used to respect.

  12. What this is, is a mauling of a small neighborhood park that happens to be in the “safe” side of Coney Island, and is likely the underlying motivation to squeeze this in, and the community out when there's tons more space and opportunity just a short distance away in the heart of Coney Island. Shame on Marty Markowitz, someone I used to respect.

  13. Mr. Markowitz is doing his best to insure that the shows keep going on…why would anyone want to stop something that's been going on for more than 30 years? Call it a shame, call it a shonda, call it whatever you want…the concerts are here to stay…a large facility would enable Mr. Mark0owitz to book even bigger artists than he does now 9like Aretha Franklin 8/09 @ Wingate and 8/12 @ ALP)

Comments are closed.