Updated 07/21/2009 03:46 PM
Council Committees Approve Coney Island Redevelopment
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Two City Council committees voted Tuesday to approve a controversial plan backed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to redevelop Coney Island.
The zoning committee approved the plan five to one, with Councilman Tony Avella opposed to the project. He was the only one to vote on an amendment to the bill.
The council's land use committee passed the measure 13 to two, with Avella and Councilman Charles Barron against it.
The plan calls for the expansion of the amusement district to 27 acres, with a 120-acre park at its core and the neighborhood's first new rollercoaster in 80 years. Currently, the amusement district makes up about three acres.
Additionally, the redevelopment would include 4,500 new housing units and a new park.
Officials say the project would create 6,000 permanent jobs and 25,000 construction jobs, along with bringing more than $14 billion in economic activity.
"The committee vote gets us one step closer to a final approval of our plan to revitalize Coney Island, protect and expand the historic amusement district and create jobs and housing for the area," said the mayor's office. "We're hopeful the council will adopt the plan when it convenes next week."
The plan still faces some challenges, as it has not yet reached a deal with developer Joe Sitt, who owns nearly 11 acres of land needed for the project and claims the city's plan cannot move forward without him.
Next week, the redevelopment is set to go before the full City Council for a vote.