Amphitheater to provide more than 240 living wage jobs, serves as new home for free Seaside Summer Concert series
De Blasio administration has invested over $180 million in infrastructure to activate affordable housing, open space, good jobs for Coney Island community
BROOKLYN, NY—Mayor Bill de Blasio today joined Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Council Member Mark Treyger, Assembly Member Pamela Harris, NYCEDC President Maria Torres-Springer, iStar CEO Jay Sugarman, and Live Nation North Atlantic President Alan Ostfield in cutting the ribbon on the brand new 5,000-seat Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk.
“We’re continuing to invest in Coney Island as both a dynamic residential community and a destination for visitors from across the city and around the world,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “The opening of this world class amphitheater is just the latest milestone in our ongoing commitment to a thriving Coney Island, with new affordable housing, open space and even more good jobs on the way.”
New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) brokered the deal for the Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk with iStar and nonprofit Coney Island USA in 2014. This public-private partnership included $60 million in investment from the offices of the Brooklyn Borough President, the New York City Council, and the Mayor, which supported the property acquisition; adaptive reuse of the Childs Building; the development of the amphitheater; and the creation of 40,000 square feet of publicly-accessible landscaped open space.
The Amphitheater has targeted local hiring through the City’s HireNYC initiative; of the 242 permanent and seasonal jobs already created, 182 have gone to Brooklyn residents and 48 have gone to residents of Coney Island. The Workforce1 system operated by the NYC Department of Small Business Services led the recruitment effort through a series of local events for all new jobs at the Amphitheater. The development is also environmentally sustainable and is designed to become LEED Silver certified.
Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk is operated by Live Nation, which has secured a summer entertainment lineup that includes more than 40 concerts, as well as a variety of family shows, sports, comedy and multicultural events. Legends, which operates at 36 Live Nation amphitheaters around the country, will provide hospitality services. Tri-State Ford Dealer Association is the naming rights partner, and the naming rights partnership was secured by Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, which manages and controls Barclays Center, the Brooklyn Nets and the New York Islanders business operations.
For more information on the Amphitheatre and upcoming events, visit fordamphitheaterconeyisland.com.
“Just in time for summer, visitors to the People’s Playground will enjoy a world class music venue drawing internationally renowned performers to our borough,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. “Coney Island has always offered the entire community an opportunity to enjoy entertainment of all varieties on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk will continue that wonderful tradition. I am pleased that this will be the new permanent home of the Seaside Summer Concert Series that I am proud to host for thousands of music lovers from Brooklyn and beyond. I look forward to many fantastic events that will stimulate further economic opportunity in a community for which we aspire to be a year-round destination for family-friendly fun.”
“Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk is a vivacious new addition that will quickly weave right into the fabric of Coney Island,” said City Council Member Mark Treyger. “While it is always good news to welcome more music and the arts to an already culturally rich neighborhood, the best part about this new facility is that the people behind it are committed to local hiring and community engagement, and will be working with local stakeholders to build on the area’s tradition of free community concerts and other purposeful programming.”
“The completion of the Ford Amphitheater marks an important accomplishment for our local businesses, residents and the entire Coney Island community,” said Assembly Member Pamela Harris. “In addition to boosting the economy and creating jobs, the new amphitheater will provide an ideal venue for Coney Island residents and visitors to experience state-of-the-art music and entertainment.”
“For over a hundred years, Coney Island has shown the world how to have fun,” said NYCEDC President Maria Torres-Springer. “We’re so excited to be continuing that legacy with a new amphitheater and open space that will serve residents and visitors alike and create hundreds of good jobs. This is yet another part of our ongoing effort to grow opportunities to live, work and play here in southern Brooklyn.”
The Amphitheater is part of a series of investments made by the City of New York in the past decade to revitalize the amusement district and improve infrastructure to support the growth of the Coney Island neighborhood. Most recently the de Blasio administration dedicated over $180 million toward infrastructure investments like roads and sewers that will help accelerate new development, including a projected 1,000 units of affordable housing, parks and new retail and community space. The City anticipates breaking ground on the first 300 affordable apartments next year.
Since 2009, the City has also helped renovate five of the six designated New York City Landmarks in Coney Island through targeted City and private investments – including the Cyclone Roller Coaster, the Parachute Jump, the Wonder Wheel, the Coney Island museum, and through this project, the Child’s Restaurant Building, built in 1923 as one of the first large-format stand-alone restaurants in the country.
The venue is also the permanent home for the relaunched Seaside Summer Concert Series which will host a sequence of free shows throughout the summer. The not-for-profit Seaside Summer Concert Series, Inc., will put on the following concerts with all seats free and open to the public:
- July 21 – Billy Ocean, The Spinners
- July 28 – Latino Music by the Sea, Victor Manuelle
- August 15 – ABBA the Concert: A Tribute to ABBA
In addition, the following concerts will be co-sponsored by Seaside Summer Concert Series, Inc. and Live Nation. 1000 tickets will be made free to the public per show, and information can be found at brooklynconcerts.com.
- July 4 – The Beach Boys
- August 12 – Kool & the Gang, Morris Day & The Time, Bootsy’s Rubber Band, Doug E. Fresh
- August 18 – Rick Springfield, Night Ranger, The Romantics
"At SBS, we are committed to supporting jobseekers, businesses and neighborhoods," said Gregg Bishop, Commissioner of the Department of Small Business Services. "We are proud to have helped bring the Coney Island Amphitheater to life by recruiting 242 New Yorkers through our Workforce1 system. Recruiting a strong workforce not only advances the Mayor's HireNYC initiative – it helps businesses like the Amphitheater to grow and create thriving neighborhoods."
“Coney Island has enormous appeal to visitors, thanks to the combination of its unique, historic identity and modern cultural appeal and offerings. The Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk is a powerful addition to Coney Island’s vibrancy, making it an even more exciting neighborhood to visit and live in. We look forward to helping visitors discover Coney Island and the new Ford Amphitheater this summer,” said Fred Dixon, President and CEO of NYC & Company.
“The opening of this Amphitheater is a dream come true not only for Coney Island, but for Brooklyn,” said former Borough President Marty Markowitz. “The Coney Island Amphitheater will now join the ranks of Jones Beach and Hyannis and will become a mainstay on the national summer concert circuit.”
“Today is a historic day for all of Brooklyn, but most importantly for Coney Island, which will now be even more of a destination for visitors from across the country and the world,” said Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President Carlo Scissura. “Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk will attract first-rate performances to one of New York’s greatest neighborhoods, generating millions of dollars in economic development for local businesses and the area as a whole. I have been proud to work on and shape this project every step of the way for the past eight years – since my very first day as Chief of Staff to former Borough President Marty Markowitz – and I cannot wait to attend many amazing shows here for decades to come. Special thanks to the entire Coney Island community for working together to create a great project, the team at iStar, all the past and present elected officials, and of course, former Borough President Markowitz for his unwavering support and commitment, which led to this amphitheater being built.”
“Coney Island is a summer staple for New Yorkers, and Live Nation is proud to bring a full and diverse lineup of live concerts and shows to the Boardwalk,” said Alan Ostfield, President of Live Nation North Atlantic. “The shows you’ll see this summer are true to the spirit of Coney Island, offering something for everyone and for friends and families to enjoy together.”
“Our Tri-State Ford Dealers are thrilled to become the naming rights partner for the new amphitheater at Coney Island,” said John Billard, Chair of the Tri-State Ford Dealers Advertising Board (Tri-State FDAF). “We are committed to the Tri-State community and look forward to sharing this exciting venue with all visitors to enjoy, as they’ve enjoyed this historic neighborhood for so many years.”
“We are thrilled to marry two iconic American brands, Ford and Coney Island, at New York’s newest outdoor entertainment destination,” said Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment CEO Brett Yormark. “The partnership will provide instant brand awareness for the venue while growing Ford’s brand footprint locally.”
"We are thrilled to be unveiling the Ford Amphitheater at Coney Island Boardwalk today. This project is a symbol of so many things: rebirth, resiliency, hard work and creative partnership,” said iStar CEO Jay Sugarman. “This is the beginning of a new chapter for Coney Island and we’re excited for the years to come.”
“Coney Island USA is proud to stand with iStar, Live Nation and other stakeholders to open Coney Island's newest major attraction, Ford Amphitheater,” said Dick Zigun, Executive Artistic Director of Coney Island USA. “This venue not only restores a beautiful 1923 landmark building, but restores Coney Island's historic reputation for presenting regular bookings of famous top quality entertainers. The venue will also be home to free concerts and the annual Mermaid Parade, and I am full of pride to have had a small part making this exciting day happen.”
“The Seaside Summer Concert Series has been a New York City tradition for the past 36 summers,” said Debra Garcia, Executive Producer of Seaside Summer Concert Series. “We look forward to working with Live Nation, as well as continuing to bring free shows to the New York community in our new permanent home on Coney Island.”
New York City Economic Development Corporation creates shared prosperity across New York City’s five boroughs by strengthening neighborhoods and creating good jobs. NYCEDC works with and for communities to provide them with the resources they need to thrive, and we invest in projects that increase sustainability, support job growth, develop talent, and spark innovation to strengthen the City’s competitive advantage. To learn more about our work and initiatives, please visit us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.