Shake Shack is negotiating with the Italian amusement company Zamperla to open a new location on the Coney Island boardwalk, sources tell the Daily News. Zamperla launched the new Luna Park earlier this summer, and the company holds the lease to some properties on the boardwalk, with current tenants including Ruby's, Beer Island, and Shoot the Freak. Earlier this week it was reported that Zamperla is requiring 11 tenants to turn in business plans detailing ideas for upgrades to make their businesses "successful." And now some worry they'll be replaced by flashy newcomers like Shake Shack—or Atomic Wings, which is also rumored to be in negotiations with Zamperla.
"We stayed in Coney Island and we kept that place alive for Zamperla to come in," said Anthony Berlingieri, owner of Shoot the Freak and Beer Island. "We're going to be the sacrificial lambs here." Zamperla's president, Alberto Zamperla, says, "If they are a good operator... we are going to keep them. If you want to improve an area, you have to bring in something new." Or it's off to the slaughterhouse! Neither Shake Shack nor Zamperla will comment on the negotiations, but Atomic Wings owner Adam Lippin says, "I love Coney Island. I think it would be a good fit."