Justice Martin Solomon

Petitioners sought to prevent New York City’s Department of Parks and Recreation from implementing a project to repair and replace a section of the Riegelman Boardwalk in Coney Island without an environmental impact statement. They argued the city’s plans to replace the boardwalk were subject to environmental review under the Environmental Quality Review Act. The city argued an environmental review was unnecessary as the project only involved maintenance or repair involving no substantial changes to an existing structure and the project came within several exemptions from environmental review. The court found evidence demonstrated the project involved routine or continuing agency administration and did not include any new programs or “major re-ordering of priorities” affecting the environment. It stated that once the city determined the project was exempt from environmental review, an affirmative determination was not required. Noting that the boardwalk’s footprint would remain the same, the court ruled its repair and replacement was exempt from environmental review. The court also found the action untimely.