Saturday, February 16, 2013

Train Station in the City - Forest Hill Station

Have you taken the MUNI trains in the city?  If you have, do you have a favorite train station, either underground or surface station?  I know, I know that that question is a bit weird. How can you have a favorite train station, right?

If you ask me, I'd pick the Forest Hill station. Why not? It has a cute structure, nice details on its façade and interior, it is located in a sleepy village and it has been part of a couple of movies. It is very easy to romanticize.

San Francisco has good public transport system. The Bay Area Rapid Transit is the regional train system and it spans multiple cities in the Bay Area with eight city stations.  In the city, the local transport is called MUNI. The MUNI is operated by the San Francisco MTA and it has an extensive network of buses, trains, street cars and cable cars. 

The Forest Hill station is sandwiched between West Portal and Castro stations. I rarely take the Forest Hill station because I live closer to a BART station but I've taken notice of this station before. It is housed in a beautiful building which blends nicely with the sleepy Forest Hill neighborhood.

Forest Hill Station - Laguna Honda

As you approach the building, you'll notice the entrance to the station. I can't think of any other subway stations that look as nice as this. From afar, it looks like an Italian villa in Tuscany. Three dark green swinging doors with metal, glass and concrete arches. The other stations anywhere in the city or Bay Area are too industrial looking for practical purposes. Forest Hills station gives something extra to the commuters.
Forest Hill Station - Gates

This is the view from the inside. Look at the details on the crown and the interior walls? The clacking sound of my shoes against the station's shiny floor echoes inside the building. I've never taken a train here during commute hours so I can imagine this area to be pretty busy and more echoing sounds of the shoes and chatter.
Forest Hill Station - Fare gates

Here is a view of the platforms downstairs. This is a view of an outbound train. The light color tile walls remind me of subway stations in Paris.
Forest Hill Station - Outbound

This is a metro station in Paris. I know this would be an overkill. But can you see the resemblance of this one to the Forest Hill platforms? 

This is the view of an inbound train. Trains K, L, M, S, and T run through this station.
Forest Hill Station - Inbound

This station is also deep. I remember years ago the first time I got on/off this station, I took the stairs. I couldn't believe how deep the train platforms are! It was a good work out. That was the first and the last time I took the stairs. I use the elevators now, like most people do.
Forest Hill Station - Stairs

Muni bus lines 36,43, 44 and 52 connect to this station.

By the way, the two movies that were shot in this stations were Dirty Harry in 1971 and Milk in 2008.  My second most favorite city subway station is the BART Glen Park station, of course. :)


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