Iowa Depot Raising Money for Restoration

Plans are underway to restore the 125-year-old Keokuk (Iowa) Union Depot.

An open house has been set for the station on July 2 during which the Keokuk Union Depot Foundation and the Keokuk Union Depot Commission will discuss their restoration efforts.

IowaGrants have thus far paid for replacement of interior oak paneling, doors and windows, but the depot needs a new roof. That will cost an estimated $1 million.

The Union Depot Foundation said it could land a $330,000 grant if it can match it with its own money.

The group received a two-for-one challenge grant from The Jeffris Family Foundation by which it would receive the $330,000 if it can raise $660,000. Thus far the depot group has raised nearly $540,000.

Restoration plans include returning the station to its original look, including restoring the central tower structure, installation of red clay tiles, and bringing the roofline back to its original condition.

Built in 1891, the union station served the Keokuk & Western, the St. Louis, Keokuk & Northwestern, the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific, the Toledo, Peoria & Western, and the Wabash railroads.

The station now sits along tracks used by BNSF and the Keokuk Junction Railway.

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