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The Park Place station platform looking north. The walkway at right includes interesting ironwork, designed by a local artist. A better look at this bit of rapid transit art is in the photo below.

     Heading south just outside Park Place, the R-68 made the switch onto the southbound track (allowing for a northbound train to pass us on the left). As we approached Botanic Garden station, we passed through one the original Brighton Line structures—the Eastern Parkway tunnel. This is one of the few true railroad tunnels on the NYCT system. This arched-brick structure goes back to the days of steam-driven coach operations of the Brooklyn, Flatbush & Coney Island Railway Co., predecessor of the modern Brighton Line. It has been beautifully and expertly re-pointed and lit for dramatic effect..

The New and the Old meet with dramatic effect at the north end of Botanic Garden station. The old-fashioned brick lined 1878 railroad tunnel has been cleaned, repointed and lighted. Until 1928, when Botanic Garden station was built, the south end of the tunnel, seen here, was outdoors with stone wing walls, as the north end still is. Douglas Diamond photo

Botanic Garden
The tunnel leads into the more modern Botanic Garden station, originally built in 1928, and now rebuilt entirely within the former subway portion. The earlier configuration was partially in subway, partially in the open air with a wooden platform. Keeping in step with the rest of the line, Botanic Garden station can only accommodate two-75 foot subway cars, thus having the shortest stations on the entire system, the rest of the system having platforms ranging from about 500 to 660 feet long. 
     The station's name was reproduced in delicate, earth tone colored tiling lending to the stations' horticultural namesake located two blocks to the west. 
     The most important improvement to the line is found at the Botanic Garden station. A long-sought connection to the nearby IRT New Lots and Flatbush Avenue lines was realized during the rebuilding process. The Franklin and the Brooklyn IRT lines cross each other at right angles at this point, and the IRT’s Franklin Avenue express station has its platform only a few hundred yards away from the Botanic Garden of the BMT (albeit a number of feet beneath the Franklin line). The solution was not a complicated one. On the far west end of the IRT platform, there was an NYPD Transit Precinct at a former mezzanine-crossover point. The Transit Police Precinct was moved to a local street location and a wall was tunneled from that mezzanine area to the Franklin Shuttle's northbound Botanic Garden station. Incredibly, the NYCT's new Franklin Shuttle route schedule brochures do not make mention of this new and vital link in the system.

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Last updated February 29, 2000