Forest Hills station (LIRR)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Forest Hills (LIRR station))
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Forest Hills
Station Sq LIRR-1.jpg
Forest Hills LIRR station south entrance
General information
Location71st Avenue and Austin Street
Forest Hills, Queens, New York
Coordinates40°43′10″N 73°50′42″W / 40.719483°N 73.844883°W / 40.719483; -73.844883Coordinates: 40°43′10″N 73°50′42″W / 40.719483°N 73.844883°W / 40.719483; -73.844883
Owned byLong Island Rail Road
Line(s)Main Line
Platforms2 side platforms
ConnectionsNew York City Subway:
"E" train"F" train"F" express train"M" train"R" train at Forest Hills – 71st Avenue
Bus transport MTA Bus: Q23, Q60, Q64, QM11, QM12, QM18
Disabled accessYes
Other information
Fare zone1
Opened1906; 116 years ago (1906)
Closed1911; 111 years ago (1911)
RebuiltAugust 5, 1911; 110 years ago (1911-08-05)
ElectrifiedJune 16, 1910
750 V (DC) third rail
Preceding station MTA NYC logo.svg Long Island Rail Road Following station
towards Penn Station
Hempstead Branch
limited service
Kew Gardens
towards Hempstead
Port Jefferson Branch Kew Gardens
Ronkonkoma Branch Kew Gardens
towards Greenport via Ronkonkoma
West Hempstead Branch
limited service
Kew Gardens
Babylon Branch Kew Gardens
towards Babylon
Long Beach Branch Kew Gardens
towards Long Beach
Far Rockaway Branch
limited service
Kew Gardens
towards Far Rockaway
     Oyster Bay Branch does not stop here
     Montauk Branch does not stop here
Former services
Preceding station Long Island
Rail Road
Following station
Grand Street Main Line Kew Gardens
toward Greenport

Forest Hills is a station on the Long Island Rail Road's Main Line in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Queens, New York City. Like other LIRR stations within New York City, passengers may take advantage of the CityTicket program on weekends. It is lightly used compared to other stations in the city, with only 1,967 weekday riders; many residents opt for the subway because of its increased service and direct express trains to Midtown Manhattan. The station is wheelchair accessible.


Located in the Queens neighborhood of the same name, Forest Hills is situated on 71st Avenue (also known as Continental Avenue) between Austin and Burns Streets. It is also the northern boundary of Station Square, a historic Tudor town center, which was across from a building known as the "Forest Hills Inn."[2] The station is also just east of the West Side Tennis Club. Two blocks to the north along 71st Avenue is the Forest Hills–71st Avenue subway station, one of the busiest in Queens.


Built in 1906,[3] the Forest Hills station is one of the oldest operating passenger railway stations in New York City, predating IND subway expansion to the area in the mid 1930s. Being subsequently remodeled for handicapped accessibility with ramps, it is unique among LIRR stations that doesn't contain the standard blue and white signage (Nostrand Avenue was another such station prior to its 2018 renovation). Instead there are plaques and antique signs that complement the surrounding area. On July 4, 1917, former President Theodore Roosevelt made his "Unification Speech" from the steps of this station.[4]

On March 17, 1936, at a hearing of the New York State Transit Commission and the New York State Public Service Commission, the LIRR said that it would seek permission in 1937 to abandon the three stations along the Main Line between Jamaica and Pennsylvania Station—Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, and Woodside. The LIRR had said that it anticipated a loss of annual revenue between $750,000 and $1 million with the opening of the extension of the Independent Subway System's Queens Boulevard Line to Jamaica.[5]

In November 1963, the LIRR announced a plan to shorten the platforms at Forest Hills and Kew Gardens by 300 feet (91 m). The railroad's justification was that ridership at the stations was low, and did not warrant repairing the crumbling concrete. These sections of platforms had been installed in about 1929 to allow the stations to accommodate full-length trains. This move was opposed by civic groups, and resulted in an investigation by the Public Service Commission. However, the platform extensions were removed in 1965 or 1966.[6]

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), in its 2010–2014 capital program, proposed lengthening the four-car-long platforms at Forest Hills and Kew Gardens to allow additional train cars to board at the station. The platform extensions would reduce waiting time at the station while allowing for more efficient operations between Jamaica and Penn Station. Although $4.5 million was allocated for the project, the money was ultimately redistributed to other projects.[7]: 58, 186 [a]

On July 26, 2018, it was announced that the LIRR planned to extend the platforms at Kew Gardens and Forest Hills by 200 feet (61 m) to accommodate six-car trains. The platform extensions will consist of fiberglass decking supported by steel scaffolding structures, allowing the extensions to be completed quickly, and at a low cost, while allowing the LIRR to plan for a permanent solution. Preparation work began during the week of July 23[1] and the new extensions went into service the week of September 12, 2018.[9][10]

Station layout[edit]

A local station, Forest Hills has two side platforms, both six cars long, and four tracks. The relatively flat and straight stretch of track at Forest Hills has been used for PATH PA-1 and R44 speed tests.[11][12]

Platform level
Platform A, side platform Disabled access
Track 3      Main Line services toward Penn Station (Woodside)
Track 1      Main Line services does not stop here →
Track 2      Main Line services does not stop here →
Track 4      Main Line services toward Jamaica and Points East (Kew Gardens)
Platform B, side platform Disabled access
G Street level Entrances/exits



  1. ^ A revision to the Capital Program from June 2010 does not include the Forest Hills platform extension project.[8]: 32–33 


  1. ^ a b "LIRR to Lengthen Platforms at Forest Hills and Kew Gardens". Metropolitan Transportation Authority. July 27, 2018. Retrieved July 27, 2018.
  2. ^ "History of Station Square". Retrieved April 22, 2018.
  3. ^ "History of Station Square". Retrieved April 22, 2018.
  4. ^ Morrison, David D.; Pakaluk, Valerie (2003). Long Island Rail Road Stations. Images of Rail. Arcadia Publishing. p. 39. ISBN 0-7385-1180-3.
  5. ^ "L.I.R.R. to Drop Way Trains From N.Y. to Jamaica. Line Anticipates $750,000 Loss When Subway Opens, Is Plea at Hearing". Brooklyn Times Union. March 18, 1936. Retrieved December 2, 2021.
  6. ^ "L.I.R.R. Plan to Shorten 2 Queens Platforms Scored". The New York Times. November 14, 1963. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved November 26, 2017.
  7. ^ "Proposed 2010-2014 Capital Program" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. September 2009. Retrieved November 24, 2017.
  8. ^ "MTA Capital Program 2010-2014" (PDF). Metropolitan Transportation Authority. July 31, 2017. Retrieved November 24, 2017.
  9. ^ "Platform Extensions at Forest Hills, Kew Gardens Stations Now Open". Forest Hills Post. September 12, 2018. Retrieved September 13, 2018.
  10. ^ Kelley, Ryan (September 12, 2018). "LIRR opens extended platforms at Forest Hills and Kew Gardens stations". Retrieved September 13, 2018.
  11. ^ " Image 21781".
  12. ^ "Showing Image 7650".

External links[edit]