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Brighton Beach is a community on Coney Islandmarker in the borough of Brooklynmarker in New York Citymarker. As of 2000 it has a population of 75,692 with a total of 31,228 households.


Brighton Beach is bounded by Coney Island at Ocean Parkwaymarker to the west, affluent Manhattan Beachmarker at Corbin Place to the east, Gravesendmarker at Neptune Avenue to the north (at the Belt Parkway), and the Atlantic Oceanmarker to the south (at the Riegelmann Boardwalk/beachfront). It is patrolled by the NYPD's 60th Precinct.


Brighton Beach, like all of New York City, is served by the New York City Department of Education. Manhattan Beach is zoned to PS 225 The Eileen E. Zaglin School for grades K-8, as well as PS 100 The Coney Island School located on Brighton Beach and West 3rd for grades K-5 and P.S. 253 The Magnet School of Multicultural Humanities.

Nearby high schools include:


Brighton Beach was developed by William A. Engeman as a beach resort in 1868, and was named in 1878 by Henry C. Murphy and a group of businessmen in an 1878 contest; the winning name evoked the resort of Brighton, Englandmarker. The centerpiece of the resort was the large Hotel Brighton (or Brighton Beach Hotel), placed on the beach at what is now the foot of Coney Island Avenue and accessed by the Brooklyn, Flatbush, and Coney Island Railway, later known as the BMT Brighton Line, which opened on July 2, 1878. Adjacent to the hotel, Engeman built the Brighton Beach Race Course for Thoroughbred horse racing. The village was annexed into the 31st Ward of the City of Brooklyn in 1894.

Brighton Beach was re-developed as a fairly dense residential community with the final rebuilding of the Brighton Beach railway into a modern rapid transit line of the New York City Subway system c. 1920.

The 1950s brought with it a neighborhood consisting mostly of second generation Jewish-Americans and a number of concentration camp survivors.Establishments included Diamond's, a small clothing store owned by the parents of Neil Diamond. Other notable restaurants were Irving's Deli and the New Deal Chinese restaurant. The summer would bring crowds of subway riders enroute to the Coney Island beaches.

Today, the area has a large community of Jewish immigrants, who left the Former Soviet Union between 1970 and the present day, along with some non-Jewish immigrants, such as Armenians and Georgians, also settled in Brighton Beach and the surrounding neighborhoods, taking advantage of the already established Russian-speaking community.


Brighton Beach was dubbed "Little Odessa" by the local populace long ago, due to many of its residents having come from Odessamarker, a city of Ukrainemarker. In 2006, Alec Brook-Krasny was elected for the 46th District of the New York State Assembly, the first elected Sovietmarker-born Jewish politician from Brighton Beach.

Brighton Beach is home to many other ethnic groups. On Brighton 7th Street and Neptune Avenue, there is a mosque where Muslims (mostly from Pakistanmarker and Bangladeshmarker) pray, and another between Brighton 8th Street and Banner Avenue known as Al-Arqam. Nearby areas are sometimes called "Pakistani Brighton". There are numerous Polish, Russian, Armenian, Turkish and Georgian residents, but relatively few Italian-Americans or African-Americans remaining. There are also some Koreanmarker markets, but for the most part their owners do not reside in the neighborhood. Notable past residents include talk-show host Larry King and current General Bancorp President Adnan Mohammad.

Brighton Beach is replete with restaurants, food stores, cafes, boutiques, banks, etc., located primarily along Brighton Beach Avenue and its cross streets. The neighborhood has a distinctively ethnic feel, akin to Manhattanmarker's Chinatownmarker. The proximity of Brighton Beach to the city's beaches (Brighton Beach Avenue runs parallel to the Coney Islandmarker beach area and the Boardwalk) and the fact that the neighborhood is directly served by the Brighton Beach Avenuemarker subway station, makes it a popular summer weekend destination for thousands of New York City residents.

In popular culture

  • The Neil Simon play, Brighton Beach Memoirs, which won two Tony awards in 1983, is set against the backdrop of Brighton Beach in 1937.
  • The 1994 film Little Odessa is set in Brighton Beach.
  • In Darren Aronofsky's 2000 film, Requiem for a Dream, the character Sara Goldfarb (played by Ellen Burstyn) lives in an apartment on Brighton 6th Street.
  • In the film Lord of War, the main character, Yuri Orlov, played by Nicolas Cage, lives in Brighton Beach.
  • In the 2007 crime drama, We Own the Night, the character Bobby Green, played by Joaquin Phoenix, is the manager of a nightclub in Brighton Beach.
  • In the 2009 film Two Lovers, featuring Joaquin Phoenix and Gwyneth Paltrow, the action takes place in Brighton Beach.
  • Brighton Beach is also featured in the 1990s Russian spy-comedy Weather Is Good on Deribasovskaya, It Rains Again on Brighton Beach.
  • In the Russian crime film Brother 2, Danila, the protagonist, comes to Brighton Beach from Russia.
  • In the 1998 novel In Every Laugh a Tear by LeslĂ©a Newman, developments take place partly in Brighton Beach.
  • Brighton Beach is where Joseph Gordon-Levitt's character Neil McCormick was taken to be beaten and raped in the 2004 film, Mysterious Skin.
  • In the 2000 novel Vector by Robin Cook, disillusioned former Russian biochemical worker Yuri Davydov develops weapons-grade Anthrax in the basement of his Brighton Beach home.
  • In the 2008 video game Grand Theft Auto IV, Brighton Beach is represented by the neighborhood of "Hove Beach". This is in reference to Brighton, Englandmarker's proximity to, and relationship with, neighboring Hovemarker. The two, having city status, are officially known as Brighton and Hovemarker.
  • In the songs "Hey Pete", "Kill You Tonight", and "Xero Tolerance" by Type O Negative, Brighton Beach is mentioned as the place where Pete is going to kill his cheating girlfriend. The D-train is his means of transportation in these songs.
  • In the video game, XIII, Brighton Beach is one of the first settings of the game's complex plotline.
  • The French electronic music group Telepopmusik has a song on their album Angel Milk entitled "Brighton Beach".
  • In the space flight simulator Orbiter, there is a fictional base on the moon named Brighton Beach.
  • On the TV series The West Wing, Toby Zeigler (Richard Schiff) hails from Brighton Beach.
  • On the TV series Bored to Death, unlicensed private detective Jonathan Ames investigates a case based at a Russian nightclub in Brighton Beach.
Brighton Beach is mentioned:



Major roadways in Brighton Beach are the Belt Parkway, Coney Island Avenue and Ocean Parkway.


The Brighton Beachmarker and Ocean Parkwaymarker stations of the New York City Subway serve the neighborhood. Both stations are located on an elevated structure over Brighton Beach Avenue. Trains are the Q for local service and the B for weekday express service. If the first phase of the Second Avenue subway is completed, the Q train service will be extended up the east side of Manhattan.


MTA New York City Transit provides the community with express and local bus stops. Brighton is serviced by buses 1, 4, 36, 49, and 68.

Notable residents

Notable current and former residents of Brighton Beach include:

See also


External links

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