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Court Rules City Can Rebuild Coney Island Boardwalk With Concrete

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TWC News: Court Rules City Can Rebuild Coney Island Boardwalk With Concrete
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The state Supreme Court ruled Monday that the city does not need an environmental review to replace a large portion of the Coney Island Boardwalk with concrete. NY1's Michael Herzenberg has the story.

The city wants to replace a quarter mile of the boardwalk with a concrete base and lane plus plastic lumber decking because it would have better longevity, availability and slip resistance.

"We think it's imperative that any design or work be halted," Rob Burstein of the Coney Brighton Boardwalk Alliance said.

The Coney Brighton Boardwalk Alliance sued the city to stop the project, but the state supreme court sided with the city saying the Parks Department does not need an environmental review to move forward.

"We're disappointed with the judges ruling," Burstein said. We think it didn't appropriately address the safety concerns in our community. Especially in light of the recent storm."

Mayor Michael Bloomberg wants to replace all boardwalks destroyed by Sandy with concrete because he says they weather storms better.

Opponents say it's more complicated than that.

"West of Beach 86th Street, where there were no rock jetties, wood and concrete were both decimated," Burstein said. "East of it, where there were rock jetties, wood and concrete survived intact."

Neighbors here also believe concrete doesn't protect their property as well as wood.

But the New York City Law Department said they will proceed according to the ruling.

"We are pleased the judge found that the Parks Department complied with the law, thus allowing this project to proceed," Katie Kendall of the Law Department said in a statement. "The Parks Department will continue to weigh the local communities' needs and concerns."

The plaintiff's lawyers are viewing the ruling and may appeal.

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