Yesterday the New York Post reported that the businesses being evicted from the Coney Island boardwalk (including longtime institutions like Shoot the Freak and Ruby’s Bar) had “drawn a line in the Coney Island sand” and were demanding a buyout of $2 million to leave the premises. Linda Gross, president of LCG Communications, a PR organization representing the eight businesses, says this is untrue.
According to Gross, the owners are all “unhappy and angry” because “the information received from unnamed ‘city officials’ was patently false.”
They offered this statement:
We, the Coney Island 8, intend to stay on the boardwalk, where we belong. There have been no offers made by either side to settle this for money. The City is lying, pure and simple — because they are worried that their scheme to take over our authentic, local Coney Island businesses and replace us with large, uncaring and unknowing foreign corporations will not be tolerated by those who love Coney Island and what it stands for. New Yorkers are not so easily fooled. We intend to fight and fight hard. For us, it’s not about money.
Meanwhile, according to the city official quoted by Post, “The tenants are holding the boardwalk hostage in order to get a big payout and then walk away.”
And, yet, even if such a payout were to be true, that $2 million would presumably be divided by 8, making it, all things considered, questionably “big” — $250,000 a property to account for, in the case of Ruby’s, 76 years of existence.
We’ve contacted the New York Post for comment and will update pending a response.