Coney Island (Riegelmann) Boardwalk

STATUS Designated Scenic Landmark

DATE: 1923

STYLE: boardwalk


Designation date: May 15, 2018

*Planned and designed by engineer Philip P. Farley, the Coney Island (Riegelmann) Boardwalk is one of the best-known waterfront promenades in the world. Named for Brooklyn Borough President Edward J. Riegelmann, who played a leading role in its creation during his two terms in office, the 2.7-mile-long boardwalk was part of an ambitious plan to rejuvenate Coney Island and the beach. Inspired by the success of earlier public boardwalks in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and other locations, officials hoped the boardwalk would turn the area into a year round resort. The Coney Island Boardwalk gave people of all economic and social backgrounds free access to the beach and has become a significant destination unto itself.

The boardwalk was originally constructed with wood planks laid in a modified chevron pattern, flanking two longitudinal paths. The boardwalk has been largely reconstructed over time, in addition to replacement wood planking laid in a modified chevron pattern, concrete paving has been installed from Brighton 1st Road to Ocean Parkway, and West 33rd to 37th Streets. Recycled plastic lumber with a concrete carriage path has been installed from Brighton 15th Street to Coney Island Avenue. Recycled plastic lumber was also used in the 2013 reconstruction of Steeplechase Pier after it was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

*Excerpt from the Landmarks Preservation Commission designation report

STATUS Designated Scenic Landmark

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The Neighborhood

Coney Island

Coney Island faces Lower New York Bay and Sandy Hook, New Jersey, and was formerly part of Gravesend, one of Brooklyn’s original six towns. Originally an island it was connected to Brooklyn (Long Island) by landfill in the early 20th century.

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Landmark Activity

Apr 16, 2018

HDC@LPC: Designation Testimony – Coney Island Boardwalk

Review the Testimony

Local Voices

“I don’t know what the City would be without HDC. [They] testified before LPC time after time and helped us focus on the right issues. We would not be an historic district without HDC! ”

Doreen Gallo: DUMBO Neighborhood Alliance

Local Voices

“Use HDC as a resource because they know what they are doing and can offer advice on how to go about creating a district from every front: architectural, political, LPC, and the media. I had floundered prior to my involvement with this invaluable organization.”

Fern Luskin: Lamartine Place Historic District; Friends of Lamartine Place & Gibbons Underground Railroad Site

Local Voices

“HDC provided guidance and shared information during that process—we knew which Council members were going one way or another and we changed a few minds. I don’t think NoHo would have had as cohesive a district had it not been for HDC’s aid.”

Zella Jones: NoHo Historic District; NoHo East; and NoHo Extension

Local Voices

“I remember Richard saying at a meeting, we have someone here from HDC, Nadezhda Williams, Director of Preservation and Research, to help us. She said to us, ‘You are not the only ones going through this.’ HDC included us in an enormous community”

Erika Petersen: West End Preservation Society

Local Voices

"HDC has begun a series of projects to highlight the Bronx's architectural and cultural history. From booklet's and research highlighting specific sites and historic districts to the HDC's symposium in October 2018 to the latest community-based committee to look into further possible sites to qualify for landmarking, the HDC has established projects that will serve the Bronx community well."

Elena Martinez
City Lore, Folklorist
Bronx Music Heritage Center, Co-Artistic Director

Local Voices

"Welcome2TheBronx is grateful for the advocacy done by the Historic Districts Council on behalf of the people of The Bronx. Through their deep connections and understanding of the importance of preserving our local histories, The Bronx has been able to have several spotlights shown on endangered communities as gentrification creeps into the borough."

Ed García Conde,
founder and Executive Director,