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Page 6
of the deferred maintenance years of the mid-20th century, took a toll on Stillwell Terminal. During the '90s, the Transit Authority, now known as New York City Transit, assessed the state of its system with the mandate of bringing the system up to "a state of good repair." Upon examining the condition of Stillwell, it was decided that nothing short of a major rebuild of the 80-year terminal would do.
On September 7, 2002 the Brighton Beach and Culver Lines departed Stillwell Terminal, joining the Sea Beach, which earlier had its service cut back to 86th Street station on the mainland side of Coney Island Creek. On that day, for the first time since the Brighton Line entered Culver Depot in 1903, each of the four Coney Island-bound rapid transit lines ended their runs at a different terminal. The Brighton Line now ends its run at Brighton Beach, as in days of old, and the Culver Line doesn't make it to the beach, ending at Avenue X station. Only the West End Line, ending on its
platform outboard of the concrete terminal structure, continues to use what is left of "New West End Terminal."
New Stillwell Terminal
The New Stillwell Avenue Terminal, presently under construction, consists of two major architectural areas, a new terminal entrance and a new train shed. The new entrance, by di Domenico + Partners, LLP, consists of a ground floor retail arcade that serves also as the terminal entrance. Two levels above the arcade will be occupied by NYC Police and Signal Maintainers quarters. The terra-cotta parapet on the original building, with its BMT LINES tile work and BMT logo, recommended for listing on the National Register of Historic Places, has been removed, and will be restored and incorporated in the new building.
The architects describe the new entrance as "a collage of elements that recall the 'Playland' character of Coney Island's past and express the
new program housed within, which will support Coney Island's future. The portal will have views to the beach and the new minor league baseball stadium.
"The interiors will provide a clear and formal articulation of public, semi public and private spaces in response to the program.  The Police facility is primarily composed of a reception area, personnel offices, public meeting rooms, interview rooms and detention areas. "The facade of the three story building incorporates the restored terra cotta facade as a portal, recalling images of Coney Island's past with a tower housing a back-up power generator and strings of lighting reminiscent of the 'Luna Park' lights.  The Terra-Cotta colored tile, curved glass block wall and Woodland Night green metal louvers in the facility's exterior corridor unite it with the train station and adjacent commercial space."
The train shed is a startling departure from the previous structure. The old station had
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©2003 The Composing Stack Inc. ©2003 Paul Matus
Updated May 1,  2003