River Station (Los Angeles)

Coordinates: 34°04′07″N 118°13′52″W / 34.0687°N 118.2311°W / 34.0687; -118.2311
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River Station
The first River Station
General information
LocationThe Cornfield, Los Angeles State Historic Park (site),
Los Angeles, California
Coordinates34°04′07″N 118°13′52″W / 34.0687°N 118.2311°W / 34.0687; -118.2311
Owned bySouthern Pacific Railroad
Opened1876; 147 years ago (1876)
Closed1901; 122 years ago (1901)
Former services
Preceding station Southern Pacific Railroad Following station
Glendale Coast Line Central Station
Glendale San Joaquin Valley Line

River Station was a Southern Pacific Railroad passenger station location, southwest of the Los Angeles River and north of Downtown, in Los Angeles, California. The site is within the present day Los Angeles State Historic Park.[1]


The location for both stations was at the Southern Pacific's Los Angeles freight yard, at the north end of present-day Chinatown in Central Los Angeles. Their former site is in 'The Cornfield' section of Los Angeles State Historic Park.

First station (1876−1887)[edit]

The station was opened following the Southern Pacific's acquisition of the Los Angeles & San Pedro Railroad in 1873 and the railroad's construction of line linking San Francisco to Los Angeles. The first River Station was a wooden structure built in 1876.[2] Transcontinental trains started serving the station in 1881.[3] The two-story station had both women's and men's waiting rooms and later had a hotel and restaurants added to it. It was the arrival station of many migrants drawn during the land boom of the mid-1880s.

Second station (1887−1901)[edit]

The second River Station

The second River Station was built in 1887, on the site of the demolished original one. It was a brick Romanesque Revival style building.

Because the station was not in the city's center, Southern Pacific built the Arcade Depot in eastern Downtown Los Angeles in 1888.[2] The second River Station was used until 1901, when it was demolished.[2][dubious ]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Uncovered railroad ruins in L.A." ABC7. September 9, 2008. Retrieved April 18, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c Nathan Masters (January 17, 2013). "Lost Train Depots of Los Angeles". Socal Focus. KCET. Retrieved July 17, 2014.
  3. ^ "Historic railyard beams located". Daily Breeze. September 6, 2008. Retrieved April 18, 2021.