Coney Island’s Economic Development Corp. has tapped the seaside neighborhood’s biggest amusement operator to fulfill Borough President Marty Markowitz’s vision of overhauling the 262-foot-tall structure’s lackluster lighting system with more “bling” so it could become Brooklyn’s “Eiffel Tower.”
Zamperla USA, which runs Luna Park and other attractions , was selected to install 8,000 colored LED lights across the Parachute Jump that will be programmable for shows and special events with music.
“The Parachute Jump will finally have enough ‘bling’ to be visible even from outer space,” crowed Markowitz, who secured $2 million in city funding for the project.
The new lighting proposal is set to go before city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission on Dec. 11 for final blessing.
If approved, the lights are expected to be installed and running by next summer, city officials said.
“With this new lighting design, the Parachute Jump will become a beacon for the neighborhood and show that Coney Island will not only recover from Hurricane Sandy, but continue its revitalization into New York’s premier oceanfront destination,” said EDC spokesman Kyle Sklerov.
The current lighting system, created by renowned lighting artist Leni Schwendinger, was installed in 2006.
But Markowitz was so unimpressed with it – he thought it was too “artsy,” and needed “blinging up” to capture Coney Island’s flash – that he convinced the mayor and City Council in 2008 to set aside $2 million to bring a new lighting system to long-inoperable ride.