Welcome To Westport, In A Flash

For decades, the only way to cross from one side of the Saugatuck train station railroad tracks to the other was through a dark, grungy, water-dripping pedestrian tunnel.

Westporters were used to it. First-time visitors were appalled.

In 2015, a partnership between the Westport Police Department — they’re in charge of railroad parking — and the Westport Arts Center, with gifts from Bill Scheffler and his wife Ann Sheffer, Robin Tauck, the late Gordon Joseloff and others, turned the sometimes-scary passageway into a stunning art gallery.

Westport native and noted artist Miggs Burroughs created 16 LED-lit lightboxes. Each continued a lenticular image that combined one from a 100-year-old postcard of Westport’s past, with a current shot of the same scene.

Downtown, Compo Beach, Longshore, the station itself — all are displayed in fascinating then-and-now fashion. It’s a much more welcoming “Welcome to Westport.”

One view — or rather, two — of downtown, at the train station.

Now there’s another lightbox nearby — on the station wall itself. And this one even says “Welcome.”

Miggs and the WPD worked with renowned lighting designer Gary Novasel to create a custom LED light panel.

The image changes from a view of the Ruth Steinkraus Cohen Bridge to a beach scene.

Those 2 iconic views of Westport now greet visitors. It’s one more way to let them know we’re glad they’re here.

And residents coming off the train will be happy to know they’re home too.

From left: Officer Shawn Sembler, Police Chief Foti Koskinas, lenticular image creator Miggs Burroughs, lightbox lighting director Gary Novasel, Deputy Police Chief Sam Arciola.

10 responses to “Welcome To Westport, In A Flash

  1. Nice legs, Chief!

  2. Miggs! What would Westport be without you?

  3. Miggs is a Westport treasure!

  4. Clever and awesome! Now let Covid disappear so we can all use the train and enjoy the show!

  5. Miggs is amazing!! Beautiful work.

  6. mary schmerker

    Thank you Miggs. As the others have noted you are a treasure. As a kid that Tunnell always intrigued me. I could dream up all kinds of stories about it. Now, thanks to the efforts of Miggs and others it is another Westport treasure..

  7. Frannie Southworth

    For the 33 years I’ve called Westport home, Miggs has been a household name. He gives so much to the community through his generosity and creativity!! Ditto what Laurie said. A real treasure. I haven’t taken the train since Covid but I’ll have to take a ride down and look at the tunnel now. Thanks Dan for bringing this to our attention as usual!

  8. is there a link to see them all?

  9. Echoing all the compliments to Miggs, and adding a shoutout to Foti. His work with the stations over the years goes above and beyond.

  10. Elaine Marinno

    If Miggs ever decides to offer a “master class” on how he creates lenticular pieces, I would love to attend. They are beautiful and fascinating!

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