NY1 Exclusive: Developer Describes Plans For New Coney Island Park

March 7, 2010

As the new developer for Coney Island gets ready to take control of the property from the city on Monday, NY1 received on Friday an exclusive interview and a tour of the site of the new amusement park. Borough reporter Jeanine Ramirez filed the following report.

In less than 90 days, a brand new amusement park will rise from the rubble of Coney Island. It will be called “Luna Park,” and the entrance will be reminiscent of the famed Luna Park of old.

The planned entrance of Luna Park.

The planned entrance of Luna Park.

In his very first interview with the New York media, President Valerio Ferrari of Central Amusement International gave NY1 an exclusive tour of the site and detailed his vision for the new incarnation of Coney Island. His company recently won the city’s bid to develop this former Astroland site.

Among the 19 planned rides is the “Air Racer,” which will make its world debut and simulate the force of a spinning jet fighter.

“So you will experience almost full G when you sit on this ride. It will be really cutting-edge,” said Ferrari.

Ferrari said his company had a special edge over the competition to land the 10-year lease.

The design for the "Air Racer" ride.

The design for the “Air Racer” ride.

“We have a very close connection to probably the largest amusement manufacturer in the world, which is [Italian manufacturer] Zamperla. With their help, we’ll be able to bring rides here for the first time,” said Ferrari.

On the way are two roller coasters, including the Speedy Discovery Coaster, and other thrill rides like the Mega Disk-O, and the Midi Discovery.

On Monday, Central Amusement will officially take over this property from the city. The developer plans to dig out the asphalt, put down wiring and start building a new foundation.

The rides will arrive from Italy around mid-April and Ferrari vowed they will be up and running by May 29, when Coney Island officially opens for the summer on the Memorial Day weekend.

The design for the "Mega Disk-O" ride.

The design for the “Mega Disk-O” ride.

“We’re going to make it happen. It will happen,” said Ferrari.

As for the Astro Tower that has been on the site since the early 1960s, Ferrari said it will stay as decoration and a piece of nostalgia, but it is not operational.

Ferrari’s ambitious plans don’t stop with the amusement park. He says next year he will take over some of the concession stands on the famed boardwalk and also develop lots along both sides of Stillwell Avenue for amusements. Ferrari said he plans to run the two parcels of land as one park called “Scream Zone.”

Note:  for a video of the interview to to http://www.ny1.com


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