Swaying Astrotower dismantled at New York's Coney Island

July 5, 2013 at 2:37 PM
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NEW YORK, July 5 (UPI) -- Two amusement parks in New York's Coney Island were closed for two days this week because the Astrotower, a holdover from a closed park, was swaying.

Luna Park and Deno's Wonder Wheel Park were allowed to reopen at 3 p.m. Thursday, the New York Post reported. They were forced to shut down Tuesday afternoon.

By the time of the reopening, enough of the Astrotower had been removed to prevent any danger of its toppling. Officials say the tower will be dismantled and scrapped.

The closing into the Fourth of July holiday cost both parks thousands of dollars in business.

"I thought I saw everything in 43 years in Coney Island when I went through Sandy last year, but to be closed two days during the July Fourth holiday week is something I'd never expect," said Dennis Vourderis, co-owner of Deno's. "Thank God we are back open. It's about time."

The Astrotower, an observation tower, was one a feature of the Astroland Amusement Park, a space-age themed park that opened in 1962 and closed in 2009. Luna Park now occupies its site.

The Fourth of July draws thousands of people to Coney Island for the Nathan's hotdog eating contest.

Business owners affected by the closing said most of that crowd was long gone by the time the parks reopened at 3 p.m..

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