Gowanus Lounge: Serving Brooklyn

Breaking News: Coney Island’s Astroland Sold to Thor, Closing Next Year

November 28th, 2006 · 11 Comments

Astroland Closed for Season

We don’t normally do straight copy and paste, but in this case we will. Thor Equities has purchased Astroland in Coney Island. It will close at the end of the 2007 season. More in the morning. For now, this from the Associated Press via the Daily News:

The vintage Astroland Amusement Park, one of the anchors of Coney Island since its 1962 opening, was purchased Tuesday by a developer intent on restoring the Brooklyn beachfront as a $1.5 billion year-round resort.

The Albert family, owners of the well-known park, will close the 3.1-acre attraction at the end of the 2007 summer season under the deal reached with Thor Equities. The Alberts will continue to operate the landmark Cyclone roller-coaster, which turns 80 next year, under an existing agreement with the city.

The decision to sell was “very difficult and made only after months of extensive discussion,” said Carol Hill Albert, co-owner of Astroland with husband Jerome. The park was launched by her late father-in-law, Dewey Albert.

In the end, the cost of converting Astroland to a year-round operation was too steep. The family had turned down larger bids last year “in the hope of finding an alternative that would enable us to keep our current location,” Albert said — but it didn’t pan out.

Thor Equities plans a $1.5 billion, year-round facility in Coney Island. Although no price was given for the Astroland purchase, Thor had already spent $100 million snapping up properties along the venerable boardwalk.

Thor’s plans include a mix of amusements and attractions, including a new roller coaster and a new hotel to accommodate the anticipated arrival of new tourists.

The site of the amusement park is renowned for another reason. Local legend has it that restaurateur Charles Feltman invented the hot dog there in 1874.

The Alberts, although they sold their property to Thor, retained ownership of attractions like the water flume and the Astrotower in hopes of adding some new rides and relocating to another section of the neighborhood.

The amusement park employs about 300 workers every summer, and Albert was hopeful that city and Brooklyn officials could help with relocation costs.

“The Albert family is proud to have provided so many wonderful memories for so many generations and to have been such an important part of New York’s world famous Coney Island,” Albert said.

Coming Tomorrow: Thor buys the naming rights to Coney Island and tries to decide between Sittville, Sitt Island and ThorSittia.

Tags: coney island

11 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Anonymous // Apr 21, 2007 at 11:38 pm

    Thats just crazy that is a New York tradition.. I cant believe it

  • 2 Anonymous // Apr 23, 2007 at 3:34 pm

    well it looks like condo’s and penthouses for the rich and shameless once again. If you have the money you can do anything you want to and the little people can’t do jack about it. I only pray that these people do some of what they say as far as to the restoration of Coney Island amusement center.

  • 3 Anonymous // May 25, 2007 at 11:25 am

    i cant believe that such a place that has been around since i could remember is going to close. my family has had many wonderful years there and it breaks my heart to see it go!!!!

  • 4 Anonymous // May 25, 2007 at 11:40 am

    i cant believe that a family place with so many memories for so many people is coming to an end i think that the upcoming resort is not going to be as affordable for many families although they will be making money for the little will suffer!!!! my heart is broken

  • 5 Anonymous // May 25, 2007 at 11:43 am

    thats crazy i went there so many times as a child and as an adult and wanted to take my children there and now i cant you have to hate the rich who care about none

  • 6 Hassan // May 27, 2007 at 1:21 am

    Once again, we meet with people who have money in their bloodstreams that are hurting those with actual blood in them. This is unfortunate, costly, and simply unnecessary.

  • 7 Anonymous // Jun 11, 2007 at 4:52 pm

    man its said to see coney go i had good tims there why do they want to make it in to something diffrent people love that park wats wrong with it?

  • 8 Anonymous // Jun 12, 2007 at 10:48 am

    i think it b#$#$#$#. The rich get richer. This is a piece of history and they want to change the name. Thor can kiss my ass !!! All they care about is making the rich richer. How about us, the little guy who cant afford the rich lifestyle. Apparently we dont count. If thor had its way us little people would be exterminated. We should take a stand against thor. “SCREW THOR” and all their money. Fuckin shove it thor you horrible people.

  • 9 Jimmy // Jun 13, 2007 at 7:13 pm

    Dear rich people haters-
    Don’t blame “the rich” for buying Coney Island, it is the owners who decided to sell the property.
    Maybe you rich people haters should learn something about economics. It may help you make some money.

  • 10 Anonymous // Jul 10, 2007 at 9:33 pm

    I cant belive that their closing down the famous Astroland. Since i was a child the park was like heaven to me. I used to go almost every weekend to spend my whole day there. I see that ends this year. I wonder how the next resort is gonna look like.
    I still cant belive that thor bought the naming right to coney island and wants to rename it. It should stay the same. Coney Island is a real historical name. The name was there since the Dutch settled here. It shouldn’t be changed.

  • 11 ANGIE // Aug 22, 2007 at 11:00 am