Saturday, May 08, 2010

National Train Day

Today was proclaimed National Train Day by the federal
government and in conjunction with this, the Friends of the
Grand Junction Union Depot held an open house at the old
train station. They're in the process of trying to restore the
station, which was built in 1906. They have a lot of work to
do, but I hope they're successful. It certainly has a lot of
history, as it opened the same day as the San Francisco
Earthquake. It's first customers weren't travelers, but
instead refugees from the quake. It also hosted Harry
Truman's whistle stop Presidential campaign in 1948.

The building was judged as sound and able to be restored. As we
looked at the exterior, there are definitely a lot of positive

As you can see, the interior is not quite a well kept as the exterior.

There is serious potential though.

My favorite part of the station is this stained glass window that looks
as good as the day it was installed.

There are a lot of features on the exterior that are unique and

The original brick is all in place, as well as the original trim and

The station is located right next door to the current Amtrak station and
the area has a huge amount of freight car traffic as well. We can hear
the train whistles from our house, about a mile away and there is a
Amtrak passenger train that stops twice a day. One headed west to
Salt Lake City and San Francisco and another headed east to Denver
and Chicago.

All of this is located only a few short blocks from downtown and
is in a visually interesting area. There are drawings and plans that
would connect the station to the downtown area and revitalize this
area of town as well. I hope they succeed.


Lynn said...

They are not going to restore it though, remember? They are looking for a buyer with the money and the restoration TLC necessary to make it fabulous investor with a healthy respect for the history of the great old building.

Benjamin said...

That stained glass window is of a warrior, because you know...they actually were a part of the valley's history as opposed to tigers, wildcats or bulldogs...dontchya know.