Springfield, Illinois (Amtrak station)
The former Chicago and Alton station, currently utilized as the Amtrak station in Springfield.
|Address||N. 3rd and Washington Sts.
Springfield, IL 62701
|Platforms||1 side platform|
|Owned by||SPCL Corporation (subsidiary of the Union Pacific Railroad)|
|Passengers (2013)||202,095 5.1%|
The Springfield Amtrak station, a brick railroad depot built in 1895, serves Springfield, Illinois, the state capital. It is at mile 185 on Amtrak's Illinois and Missouri Route. As of 2007, it is served by five trains daily each way: the daily Texas Eagle, and four daily Lincoln Service schedules.
The station was originally constructed by the Chicago and Alton Railroad, and was served by a successor company, the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad, until the start up of Amtrak on May 1, 1971. During the pre-Amtrak era, a variety of name trains served this station, including the Alton Limited, the Abraham Lincoln, and the Midnight Special.
The passenger station is decorated with a small mural. Painted on the wall atop the ticket office, the mural features a route map of the post-1947 Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad and a quote from Abraham Lincoln. The mural and quote celebrate the reunion of the North and South; the state seals surrounding the mural are from the seven states (Alabama, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee) served by the GM&O. The mural is the work of Louis Grell of Chicago.
Springfield is applying for federal grant money to construct a new transportation hub building that could bring together Amtrak and local bus service. Estimates of the cost of this project, published in February 2007, ranged from $13 to $18 million, but this was a decrease from an earlier estimate of $50.0 million. One reason for the discrepancies is uncertainty over whether to try to accomplish a major relocation of railroad tracks that pass through downtown Springfield; the tracks have served the downtown area since the time of Abraham Lincoln.
In a 2010-2011 project, authorities supervised the railroad station's comprehensive refurbishment. Overhauled elements included the GM&O mural, trackside landscaping, passenger seating, handicapped accessibility, parking lot repaving and a new station roof. The $714,500 project was financed by the city and Amtrak. Springfield used $571,500 obtained through the Central Area Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district that covers much of the downtown. Other stakeholders involved in the renovation included Union Pacific Railroad, which owns the track and platform, and the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, which reviewed project plans to ensure that the station’s historic elements were preserved.
- "Amtrak Fact Sheet, FY2013, State of Illinois" (PDF). Amtrak. November 2013. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- Tim Landis, "Planning Mode: Transportation hub could be built for $14m-$18m", "State Journal Register", February 3, 2007
- All aboard? by Kurt Erickson - Illinois Issues
- "Upgrade of Illinois passenger station to begin this summer". Trains Magazine. 14 May 2010. Retrieved 15 May 2010.
- "Renovation begins at Springfield Amtrak station". The State Journal-Register. 7 April 2011. Archived from the original on 8 April 2011. Retrieved 9 April 2011.
- Landis, Tim (17 September 2011). "Third Street Station: Dressed up depot". State Journal-Register. p. 1.
- Great American Stations. Accessed March 28, 2013.
Media related to Springfield, Illinois (Amtrak station) at Wikimedia Commons