Gary Union Station

Coordinates: 41°36′20.3″N 87°20′13.07″W / 41.605639°N 87.3369639°W / 41.605639; -87.3369639
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A color postcard from 1910 of Gary Union Station
General information
Location251 Broadway
Gary, Indiana
Former services
Preceding station Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Following station
Main Line Miller
Indiana Harbor
toward Chicago
Preceding station New York Central Railroad Following station
Indiana Harbor
toward Chicago
Main Line Millers
toward New York
Gary Union Station
Gary Union Station is located in Indiana
Gary Union Station
Gary Union Station is located in the United States
Gary Union Station
Location251 Broadway
Gary, Indiana
Coordinates41°36′20.3″N 87°20′13.07″W / 41.605639°N 87.3369639°W / 41.605639; -87.3369639
ArchitectM. A. Lang
Architectural styleNeoclassical
NRHP reference No.100004040
Added to NRHPJune 6, 2019

Union Station is a former union railway station in Gary, Indiana. It is located between the elevated lines of the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railway and Baltimore & Ohio Railroad and is just north of the Indiana Toll Road. Indiana Landmarks has placed the building on its 10 Most Endangered Places in Indiana list.[1] The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


New York Central Railroad's first station in Gary was a simple boxcar, which the railroad delivered to the town in 1906 at the behest of the United States Steel Corporation.[2] The permanent station was built in 1910,[3] just four years after the city was founded.

The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2019.


The building faces west on Broadway. Because it sits between two raised rail lines, it is nearly invisible until one is next to it. The only sign still visible inside or outside the building is a painted notice on the front pillar that says “No Parking Cabs Only”. The method of construction has retained its integrity after 50 years of abandonment.[4]


The station in 2007

The station building was built in a Beaux-Arts style utilizing the new cast-in-place concrete methods in which, after pouring, the concrete was scored to resemble stone.[5]


The main room is a two stories hall. At the east end of the hall is a staircase to the loading platform on the upper level. Built into a hill, the building is only a single story in the back. A door on the south side leads from a cobblestone driveway. Across the drive is a staircase built up to track level along the south side. On the north there is a tunnel under the tracks to a stairway up to the loading platform.[4]

Passenger trains[edit]

The New York Central's eastbound New York Special at Gary Union Station, February 1963


Successor stations in the vicinity today are the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District's Gary Metro Center and its Gary Airport station, both on the South Shore Line. Amtrak's Hammond–Whiting station (served by the Wolverine) is to the west in Hammond.

Popular culture[edit]

Gary's Union Station was used as an example for what could happen to a building in 30 years without humans providing maintenance and upkeep on Life After People: The Series (Season 1, Episode 2).

Union Station was a filming location for the 1951 Alan Ladd movie Appointment with Danger.[9] This shows off a unique feature of the building not clearly visible in most photographs; the eight bar radial star design in each section of window, similar to the design of the British Union Flag. The similarity is probably accidental. Union Station was also featured in the 1996 film Original Gangstas where it served as the hideout for the gang known as The Rebels.

Planned Reuse

On August 23, 2023, telecommunications firm Digital Equity LLC, the City of Gary, and Decay Devils broke ground on construction to adapt Gary's Union Station as a Fiber Smart House, job training center, and community space. Part of the passenger depot will become a network operations center to monitor fiber operations. Some of the building will be repurposed as a digital job training center teaching coding and other technology classes, while the grand entry will be open to the public. The adjacent freight depot is slated to house public safety emergency services. The project has a goal of opening by fall 2024.[10]


  1. ^ Postcard Images of Gary Landmarks
  2. ^ The Calumet Region Historical Guide (PDF). The Garman Printing Co. 1939. pp. 153–155.
  3. ^ Pete, Joseph S. (October 8, 2020). "Decay Devils looking to transform Gary's historic Union Station into place public can use again". The Times of Northwest Indiana. Retrieved April 20, 2021.
  4. ^ a b Lost Indiana Archived July 9, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Bearing website Archived August 18, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, Table 13". Official Guide of the Railways. 86 (4). National Railway Publication Company. September 1955.
  7. ^ "Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, Tables 1, 6". Official Guide of the Railways. 96 (1). National Railway Publication Company. June 1963.
  8. ^ New York Central timetable February 1958
  9. ^ "Appointment with Danger (1950) - IMDb". IMDb.
  10. ^ Landmarks, Indiana (2023-11-06). "New Vision for Gary's Union Station". Indiana Landmarks. Retrieved 2023-12-03.

External links[edit]