STATEN ISLAND — A new $12 million public plaza plan near the Midland Beach Boardwalk that will restore a historic Staten Island diner broke ground Monday.
The plaza will be built on an empty lot on Father Capodanno Boulevard near Seaview Avenue in Ocean Breeze, the Parks Department said. It will add an additional walkway from the street to the boardwalk and provide a permeant new home for the Victory Diner.
The 75-year-old diner was scheduled to be demolished in 2007, but was saved by Island groups to move it onto Parks property, NY1 reported. The diner, not much larger than a mobile home, was scheduled to be reopened in 2007 and 2009, but has stayed dormant and decaying since it moved from it's last spot on Richmond Road in Dongan Hills, the Staten Island Advance reported.
Borough President James Molinaro allotted $6.2 million to restore the diner and give it a traditional diner feel, the Parks Department said. They will also build an adjoining building that will potentially be used for children's birthday parties and possible future concessions, the borough president's office said.
In addition to the diner, the project will build a new decorative fountain, with interactive spray showers for kids to play in, and a 104 space "green" parking area.
The parking area will collect storm water for a series of inter-connected rain gardens, the Parks Department said. Molinaro allotted an additional $6 million for that part of the project.
The public plaza's construction is expected to be completed by Summer 2013, the Parks Department said.