Despite Robert Moses’ Best Efforts, About Half of Jones Beach Visitors Are From NYC

July 11, 2013 | Bucky Turco

The only reason for New Yorkers to ever travel to Long Island is for its beaches–on the South Shore, the ones on the North Shore are a pebbly mess–since places like Coney Island tend to be too over crowded and well, too Coney Island. According to a newly released report (PDF doc), nearly half, 49 percent to be exact, of all of visitors to Jones Beach were from the city and are quite the “ethnically diverse” bunch reports the Long Beach Patch, with “46 percent of patrons self-identifying as white; 33 percent as Latino/Hispanic; 10 percent as African American and 11 percent as “other.”

The 2012 study would likely not have sit to well with long dead, master builder Robert Moses, who some claim purposely designed Long Island’s parkways to thwart attendance by the poorer of New York City residents, most of who didn’t own cars. This snippet from Newsday, a review of Robert A. Caro’s book, The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York, explains:

Although he denied it, the bridges on the parkways had been built too low to accommodate buses so that poor people without cars, especially minorities, could not get to parks and beaches. Caro said that he was told this privately by one of Moses’ right-hand men, Sid Shapiro, who later himself became head of the park commission.

Still, Robert Moses won’t be rolling in his grave too much, as the beaches further east that bear his name, still remain predominantly white and suburban.

(Photo: Doug Kerr/Flickr)