3. Queens

Queens Fire Alarm Telegraph Station

Following the opening of the three original Fire Alarm Telegraph Stations, a Queens Fire Alarm Telegraph Station in Forest Park was built and started operating in 1928. It sits prominently on a grassy knoll facing Woodhaven Boulevard and Park Lane South with a grove of trees rising behind it.

The one-story station features an octagon-shaped central section with arch windows and a hip roof crowned by a cupola. There are flanking wings with limestone framed entrances. Curiously, this impressive building, incorporating Beaux-Arts and neo-Georgian design elements, is attributed to John R. Sliney, the Fire Department’s Building Inspector. Any architect who assisted Sliney is unrecorded.

The placing of the Fire Alarm Telegraph Stations in parks was not without controversy. For example, after widespread opposition, original plans to put the Bronx station near a playground in Crotona Park were dropped and the Bronx Park site was selected instead.