Fund Raising Campaign to Begin in February for Overhaul of Amtrak Station in Kirkwood, Missouri

The Kirkwood Train Foundation will launch in February a $3 million fund-raising campaign to pay for rehabilitating the Missouri city’s Amtrak station.

Amtrak Missouri River RunnerBuilt in 1893, the structure served Missouri Pacific passenger trains for decades before Amtrak arrived on May 1, 1971. Officials believe the station was last renovated in the 1940s.

“It is the main symbol of the city of Kirkwood,” said Art McDonnell, foundation member and former mayor in an interview with St. Louis Public Radio.

Among the work that will be done is replacing the roof and tuckpointing the exterior.

The former baggage room will house modern and expanded restrooms.  Some window and stone restoration work will also be done.

The depot was in danger of closing more than a decade ago, but the city purchased it.

Since 2003, volunteers have overseen the station creating a model operation that has been emulated in other cities served by Amtrak.

A suburb of St. Louis, Kirkwood has 27,000 residents and is served by the St. Louis-Kansas City Missouri River Runners.

In Amtrak’s early years, Kirkwood was a stop for the New York-Kansas City National Limited. After that train was discontinued on Oct. 1, 1979, the state of Missouri began helping fund Amtrak service.

Until the Missouri River Runner service came about, Kirkwood was on the routes of the Chicago-Kansas City Ann Rutledge and the Kansas City-New Orleans River Cities.

Today, Kirkwood is the third busiest Amtrak station in Missouri. This month, the train station tied for first place in a 2016 Amtrak customer satisfaction survey.

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