Press Releases

NYCEDC Issues Request for Qualifications for Coney Island SteepleChase Plaza Design

New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC), in coordination with the Department of Parks and Recreation, issued a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for landscape, architectural and consulting design services for Steeplechase Plaza, a new civic and amusement destination in the heart of Coney Island. The project is a key component of the Coney Island Strategic Plan, which calls for the enhancement of amusements and seaside attractions, establishment of a year-round entertainment destination and creation of economic opportunities for local residents.

“The creation of a signature public plaza in the heart of Coney Island is the latest in a series of initiatives designed to leverage and preserve Coney Island's unique past while creating something spectacular for local residents and all New Yorkers,” said EDC President Robert C. Lieber. “Steeplechase Plaza will serve as a fantastic public space that will complement the recently lit Parachute Jump, the new community center and affordable housing units at Coney Island Commons and the other changes that are making Coney Island an increasingly attractive place to live and to visit.”

“In the early 20th century, George Tilyou's Steeplechase Park –‘The Funny Place’ – was a must-visit destination,” said Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “Now that Coney Island is on the verge of a 21st century renaissance, Steeplechase Plaza will be a centerpiece of its revival. Centrally located between the boardwalk and KeySpan Park, Steeplechase Plaza will offer Coney Island's visitors an ideal setting for public gatherings, performances, amusements, and year-round fun. We look forward to working with the Economic Development Corporation as designers are selected to create this unique space at the site of the legendary Steeplechase Park.”

A key component of the Coney Island Strategic Plan announced by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the Coney Island Development Corporation in 2005, Steeplechase Plaza will create a new, one-of-a-kind civic and entertainment destination on a 2.2-acre site between Keyspan Stadium and the famous Coney Island Boardwalk. This new plaza would include a variety of uses, possibly to include performance space, seating areas and the restored B&B Carousel, a historic 50-horse carousel purchased by the City of New York in August 2005. Together with other planned improvements to the streetscape, public open spaces, existing facilities and landmarks, Steeplechase Plaza will catalyze new private development in Coney Island.

“The new Steeplechase Plaza will be an important component of the Coney Island of the 21st Century, providing key amenities to the next generation of visitors to America’s Favorite Playground,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “The opportunity to design a piece of American history doesn’t come along too often, and when you add in the return of the B&B Carousell, it’s a match made in Brooklyn!”

“The release of the Coney Island Steeplechase Plaza Project Request for Qualifications is another important step forward in the revitalization and redevelopment of America’s Playground,” said Council Member Domenic M. Recchia, Jr. “This new plaza would become home to a variety of venues including the historic and beloved B & B Carousel which the City saved from being sold and moved out of the Coney Island community. The new Steeplechase Plaza will become a focal point with ample public spaces and amenities that will serve both the residents and all who come to visit Coney Island. I welcome the release of the RFQ and look forward to continuing my work towards ensuring a prosperous future for Coney Island.”

Designs for the project should respect Coney Island’s iconic history while celebrating its future as a place for innovation. Consultant services sought by EDC are intended to result in designs for the following:

  • A one-of-a-kind entertainment and civic center with a user-friendly public space
  • A new iconic structure that will house the reactivated and restored B&B Carousel
  • Year-round cultural activities, amusements and revenue-generating concessions
  • Enhanced connections from the boardwalk to neighboring streets and development sites

Services of the design team will include surveys, conditions and geotechnical analysis, conceptual and schematic design, as well as design development, preparation of contract documents and the development of a maintenance plan. In addition, the team will provide shop drawing submittal review and limited construction observation services. The team must have expertise in urban planning and design, experience with waterfront or beachfront and entertainment destinations, experience working with multiple agencies, cost estimating and evaluating innovative building technologies design. The design period for the project is estimated to be 12 months.

For more information, or to request a copy of the RFQ, please go to Responses are due no later than 4:00 p.m. on March 23, 2007.

About EDC
New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) is the City’s primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. EDC’s mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City’s competitive position. EDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City’s many opportunities.


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Contact Info

Andrew Brent/Janel Patterson (EDC) 212-312-3523

Warner Johnston (Parks) 212-360-1311