Rockaway Park-Beach 116 Street is the southern and (western really) terminus of the Rockaway Line, the station is at a grade left over from the days when the entire LIRR line was. There is a small yard surrounding the station's single terminal island platform that is used to store spare Rockaway Park Shuttle trains as well as the five A train Rockaway Park specials each peak direction rush hour after they make their runs to Rockaway Park. A few A trains that terminate at Far Rockaway (that lacks a yard) deadhead via Hammel's Wye to the Rockaway Park yard for the night. Some of the tracks in the yard (with wooden third rail covers) have circular supports holding up the third rail, these are left over from the LIRR days (and are the LIRR standard) unlike the usual more simple square third rail posts. The yard also has a married pair of R40 Slants in it (#s 4393 and 4392) that are a currently sitting in it being used as Rapid Transit Operations training cars. The island platform descends slowly down (the ramp is fully ADA) at the end of it beyond the bumper blocks to where the stations decently sized station house is. A crew break-room is there along with NYPD transit police bureau. There is also doorway, outside of fare control, to the Last Stop Gourmet Shop, a restaurant, on Beach 116 Street, the main shopping strip of Rockaway Park, with low single story shops along it, and one of the nicest beaches accessible by subway a block and a half away.
For Ridership at Rockaway Park it would seem to make sense that the shuttle's terminus would have more ridership than the rest of the branch, it doesn't, it's rank is 414 (out of 422), the only station not on the Rockaway Line is East 143 St-St Mary's St, a local stop on the Pelham (6) Line in the Bronx (Source)
Superstorm Sandy: The station closed on October 29, 2012 and had its yard evacuated of equipment in preparation for Superstorm Sandy. The storm hit and destroyed the bridges across Jamaica Bay and flooded the Rockaway Park Yard including ruining the signaling equipment. The MTA Restored Subway Service via the H train and originally planned it to cover the entire Rockaways from Rockaway Park to Far Rockaway. The signaling equipment in the Rockaway Park Yard had to be completely rebuilt and H train service was restored only between Beach 90 Street and Far Rockaway. The signaling system was finally rebuilt in March 2013.
On May 30, 2013 the R1-9 Museum Train left Howard Beach full of dignitaries bound for Rockaway Park at 10:46, it arrived at Rockaway Park at 11:23 (after a short 10 minute stop at Broad Channel). This was followed by speakers and a presentation in the area between the station house and platform with a podium and fake Rockaway Park-Beach 116 Street sign behind it. There were panels with information on the restoration as well. The R1-9s were supposed to enter revenue service at noon to begin the first run out of Rockaway Park, the ceramony ran late and a Shuttle Train to Broad Channel was the first revenue train to leave Rockaway Park with passengers in seven months, departing at 12:01pm restoring service. The R1-9s left about 12 minutes later.
Arts For Transit at Rockaway Park-Beach 116 St
First on the Beach and Wednesday Night Fireworks, 2008, Laminated glass in the station building's interior windows
By K.K. Maria Dominguez
Old Station Banner