Coney Island enjoyed a large popularity among those who needed a place for relaxation and a holiday resort close enough to their homes but at the same time not too far. It blossomed ever since the 1830s and 1840s but the resort ultimately contracted in the 1960s when the emergence of more modern and more appealing neighboring resorts led to a decrease in the number of visitors in the Coney Island. At the same time, the resort was faced with several street gang problems and it had been the victim of several fires which finally led to a great contraction of its economic activity.
By 1964, the last remaining attraction in the Coney Island, Steeplechase Park was closed and the property was purchase by Fred Trump. His aim was to build luxury apartments in the area, but he could not legally do so even after a decade of court battles. In the end he leased his property to Norman Kaufman who ran several fairground amusements. The urban renewal projects that transformed the area into a low income housing project led to another decrease in the number of people visiting the island. In the 1970s, Coney Island was meant to become a place filled with gambling casinos. Yet, legally this was impossible and the island ended up with vacant lots.
In the early 1990s, the baseball stadium was build to host the games of the minor league team Brooklyn Cyclone, which was owned by the Mets. In 2003, there were plans to transform the Island in a host for the 2012 Olympics, yet, when the city lost the bid for the great games, the Coney Island was meant to be revitalized as a resort. By 2006, most of Coney Islandâs amusement parks were owned by Thor Equities and several years later new hotels were built as surrounded by amusement parks. Todayâs renewal plans favor the building of housing and hotels in the area, surrounded by the amusement parks.