Cedar Grove Beach Club Moves Out; Parks Still Has No Plans or Funds for the Site

Picture from the Staten Island Advance/Irving Silverstein

We are heartbroken to report that the 41 families of the Cedar Grove Beach Club closed up their summer homes earlier this week, probably never to return. As readers know, HDC has been helping residents of Staten Island’s last remaining beach bungalow colony fight the Parks Department’s plans for demolishing this 99-year-old community. Parks’ claims of wishing to open the area up to public access are dubious at best, considering the departments’ lack of capital funding for the project or even a detailed reconstruction plan.

Furthermore, the agency has only just begun to file paperwork for the environmental assessment necessary to evaluate the proposed demolition’s obvious negative impact on the National Register-eligible district, to say nothing of the necessary asbestos and contaminant removal demolition that it will entail. This action by Parks is a profound disservice to New York City history, as well as an inhumane and unfeeling way to treat a community which has served as stewards of the land for decades. The members of the Cedar Grove Beach Club deserved better treatment from their government and so does New York.


4 Responses to “Cedar Grove Beach Club Moves Out; Parks Still Has No Plans or Funds for the Site”
  1. Joshua Jakob says:


    Today, at 5:30 pm, I walked along New Dorp Beach, and I observed Cedar
    Grove. There are Parks officials walking from house porch to house
    porch. The second I stepped onto Cedar Grove Beach, an official waved
    at me, and yelled “YOU CAN’T BE ON THE BEACH!” I asked “Why? I’ve
    always walked on the beach.” “BECAUSE YOU CAN’T” In my 29 years of
    life, I’ve never been kicked off of the beach in Cedar Grove. There is
    a heavy Parks presence, one SUV facing into the entrance, and one SUV
    face out, with two officials standing at the gate. I have been told
    there is an army of Parks officials there today. A woman who came on
    my tour of Cedar Grove on Sunday saw me on Cedar Grove Avenue and
    approached me. She recounted her tale from today. She always takes a
    walk through the park, through the front gate. Today, she went to the
    gate, and Parks officials told her she is not allowed inside. She
    said, she heard in the Advance that this is public property. Parks
    told her, no, you are not allowed inside.

  2. Susan Burghart says:

    What is becoming of our community? I have lived here my entire life and have continuously experienced things I held dear taken from me for nearly 40 years. I have seen homes with charming detail which I cherished torn down so developers could put up “architectural” nightmares that seem to be made of particle board. Now this. The one place that I held dear to my heart and cherished (I was not a member but have been to Cedar Grove since a small child) is a place that I am now afraid of. I was a bit of a “fixture” on the beach, so to speak. It was the only place where I could go for peace of mind. But now, I feel intimidation by the Parks Department who know nothing of my bond with this precious place and my sadness of losing friends who lived at CGBC. The shadows of the sad, lonely bungalows will loom over me when I try to set foot on the beach tomorrow. I am prepared to argue, something I never wanted to do. I just want to feel at peace with nature and be surrounded by good energy. I felt dark energy today when I passed by and saw the glaring lights of all the parks cars that could hardly wait to upset the fine balance that was once my oasis. I am quite sure I will have a story to tell after tomorrow’s visit to my beloved Cedar Grove Beach. I know that it will never be the same. Ever. It was a place of dreams. I have been dreaming of it on and off throughout my life but could always awake and find it there waiting for me. But it is terminal now and soon it will be gone and will remain forever, in dreams only. And when awake, back to a shallow, cookie-cutter world. At least, on Staten Island. Where can one go where people actually appreciate the history of one’s neighborhood???

  3. Mari says:

    An abuse of eminent domain took place many years ago against the owners of these houses. They were forced to sell for a project that never took place. Then they were
    “allowed” to lease back the properties. Was there ever a lawsuit against the city once the highway was not built?

    Such a travesty of justice. I feel so sorry for these people.

    All along Rockaway you have a combination of public beach and private houses. Why don’t they fix up the surrounding beaches, which are a disgrace, and then people can wander along the shoreline and sit wherever they like. I’m sure the people of Cedar Grove would prefer that rather than having to leave summer homes that have been in their families for generations. They keep the area nice. It’s the last bungalow colony in NYC.

    I wish the city would compromise. It’s the least that should happen after these homes were unfairly taken 50+ years ago.


Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] fresh off HDC’s thwarted efforts on behalf of the Cedar Grove Beach Club — which the city plans to demolish despite a formal determination that this unique collection […]

Leave A Comment

About Us

The Historic Districts Council (HDC) is the advocate for all of New York City's historic neighborhoods. HDC is the only organization in New York that works directly with people who care about our city's historic neighborhoods and buildings. We represent a constituency of over 500 local community organizations.

Contact Us

Historic Districts Council
232 East 11th Street
New York, NY 10003
Tel: (212) 614-9107
Fax: (212) 614-9127
E-mail: hdc@hdc.org

Donate Now

Become a Friend of HDC! Your donation helps preserve, improve, and celebrate the places that make New York great.

Join Our Mailing List

Receive updates on programs, events, action alerts, and our Landmarks Preservation Commission testimony.