Kansas City Union Station

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John Bobinyec

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I just briefly visited the station on a brief stop for number 4. We were sitting on track 30. There was also track 29, but no others. Were they all ripped up and what took their place? The inside of the station is spectacular, by the way.

jb
 

Bob Dylan

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
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I just briefly visited the station on a brief stop for number 4. We were sitting on track 30. There was also track 29, but no others. Were they all ripped up and what took their place? The inside of the station is spectacular, by the way.

jb
Sadly most of the tracks were ripped out and built over from the days when Kansas City rivaled Chicago and St Louis for the number of daily Trains calling @ the Station!
 

pennyk

50 year Amtrak Rider
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My first ever "gathering" was in St. Louis, and one of the train rides was to Kansas City. Enjoyed a nice lunch with Jim and Penny at the station, which I agree, is very impressive!
That was my first gathering also. I remember the lunch and the impressive station (and company).
 

Tlcooper93

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I’ve only ever driven by, but it is a spectacular building.
I know the tracks are ripped up, but was the ROW preserved?
 

Willbridge

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In 1997 when I visited, the historic station building was being re-purposed. Trains were then in a small, modern station off to the side. It reminded me that when it was built, Kansas City was bigger than Denver. The two cities were then linked by trains of the CB&Q, Santa Fe, Union Pacific, MoPac/Rio Grande and the Rock Island. When I made the journey it was Amtrak from KCY>RAT and Thruway bus for RAT>DEN.
IMG0094 KCy Union Stn restoration k.jpgIMG0091.jpg

IMG0092.jpg

IMG0090.jpg

... and below, the walk from the station to the city bus stop.

IMG0093.jpg
 

jphjaxfl

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I recall traveling through Kansas City Union Station in 1962 when I was 14 on the Missouri River Eagle. It was a busy place then. We pulled into the track next to the MKT's Texas Special which was being serviced. The Texas Special still had a teardrop observation lounge on the end. It was 3 years before the MKT discontinued all Passenger Trains.
 
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The other tracks were removed when the office building and science museum were built. The science museum and a parking garage occupy the space where the tracks were.
 

Barb Stout

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Albuquerque, NM
I recall traveling through Kansas City Union Station in 1962 when I was 14 on the Missouri River Eagle. It was a busy place then. We pulled into the track next to the MKT's Texas Special which was being serviced. The Texas Special still had a teardrop observation lounge on the end. It was 3 years before the MKT discontinued all Passenger Trains.
What does MKT stand for?
 

Palmland

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May 25, 2006
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Central Florida
Missouri-Kansas- Texas railroad aka ‘The Katy’. It struggled financially although the Texas Special that it operated jointly with the Frisco was a very nice streamlined that had a through Pullman to Washington via the B&O. I remember walking through it as a kid and thinking it was so fancy!

John W Barringer was brought in to save it and it survived long enough to be gobbled up by the UP.
 

tgstubbs1

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There are several museums, restaurants, a Post Office and a skywalk to the nearby Crown Center Mall. There are several hotels nearby and a bridge over the tracks to the north to a midtown area with restaurants, galleries and Jack Stax BBQ.

I think the main waiting room is essentially the same as it was when I took the Rock Island but the tracks were right underneath.

There are still bullet holes in the front from a 1930's gangland shootout.

Too bad the SW Chief is only there off hours. The St. Louis trains travel in the day.
 

Willbridge

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What would be ideal is a day train with an earlier departure from CHI say leaving 8 am arrive KCY around 3pm and a later return from KCY.
This is another route that doesn't fit into a neat category, but when examined on its own has a lot of merit. The main reason it makes sense is that in spite of the efforts of the trucking lobbies it is not paralleled by an Interstate. (Google shows that the SFe route between Chicago and Kansas City is about 60 miles shorter than one of several highway combinations.)

The SFe recognized this and filled the gaps that long-distance schedules created. In 1965, they still had two services oriented toward Kansas City<>Chicago travel:
  • Kansas City Chief Train 9 = Westbound from Chicago at 10:00 p.m. carried a lounge, two sleepers and coaches.
  • Kansas City Chief Train 20 = Eastbound it was combined with the Chief from Kansas City at 10:55 p.m. (2 sleepers open at 9:30 p.m.). This added the westbound consist plus access to a dining car from the Chief and a sleeper from the Oil Flyer from Tulsa.
  • The Kansas Cityan Train 19-11 = Westbound the Kansas Cityan was combined with the Chief, departing Chicago at 9:00 a,m. In addition to the Los Angeles train's cars, it included a lounge car, Chicago<>Kansas City coaches, and a lunch counter car.
  • The Chicagoan Train 12 = Eastbound from Kansas City at 12:25 p.m. with the consist same as Train 11.
The 9:00 a.m. departure from Chicago would have been late enough in the morning to pick up connections from overnight trains, and the 8:00 p.m. arrival in Chicago would have connected to numerous overnight trains.

In theory one set of equipment could make a CHI>KCY>CHI turn but it would be pretty much on its own in Chicago, other than some suburban connections. The SFe had extensions of their Trains 11/12 southwest of KCY, so perhaps a Wichita<>Chicago daylight train with two sets of equipment would make sense.
 
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Manteno, Illinois
16 tracks covered by sheds ran under the Waiting Room of the Kansas City Union Station. The Waiting Room is the huge room North of the Grand Hall. You have to walk North under the big clock hanging from the ceiling to enter the Waiting Room. On both sides are the spots that had the gates that used to lead to the stairs down to the tracks.

Outside on the East side of the Waiting Room, Two Pershing Square, an office building is now on what used to be tracks. On the West side is Science City, the Planetarium and a Parking Garage.

Amtrak has 2 tracks just past the North edge of Union Station.

Union Station is an ARCHITECTURAL MASTERPIECE, with an 8,000 square foot N-scale to G-scale Model Train Exhibit! Science City, Planetarium, Extreme Screen Theatre, City Theater, BIG Temporary Exhibitions, Union Station Stories (up on a number of floors on the South walls of the Grand Lobby), Restaurants, Cafes and Shops. Just outside the station to the East you can catch a free Streetcar that will take you downtown. Out the back of the station to the North is a pedestrian bridge just put up for your viewing of the 5 BUSY BNSF tracks down below!
 

Bob Dylan

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
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Austin Texas
Anyone visited 12th Street & Vine? Supposed to be some crazy little women there? :cool:
That Song made KC Famous!

I've been there, it's the Old Black Entertainment District where the Jazz Hall of Fame and Negro Leagues Museum are located, ( in the Same Building) along with a few Jazz Clubs and the original Location of Arthur Bryant's BBQ Joint are located.

Definitely worth a Visit!
 

zephyr17

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Washington State
I’ve only ever driven by, but it is a spectacular building.
I know the tracks are ripped up, but was the ROW preserved?
No. Only the platform tracks at the very end of what had been the boarding concourse are left. If you have been there, that long outdoor catwalk out to the remaining platform runs beside the former boarding concourse and goes over the former platforms.

The platform track area is now a parking garage on the east side of the concourse. Not sure what is on the west side.
 
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Cal

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Kind of related, today I was using Historic Aerials: Viewer (THANK YOU to the AU’er who introduced me to it) to see how the former major stations along the Hudson waterfront in New Jersey were laid out. If I had been walking the same areas today I would never think in a million years there used to be dozens of tracks there.
 

Willbridge

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
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Denver
Kind of related, today I was using Historic Aerials: Viewer (THANK YOU to the AU’er who introduced me to it) to see how the former major stations along the Hudson waterfront in New Jersey were laid out. If I had been walking the same areas today I would never think in a million years there used to be dozens of tracks there.
My grandfather told me about what a jungle it was in 1917. With the Oregon National Guard he was sent to Hoboken (from Portland in coaches with walkover seats) to protect the ships and supplies that were piled up waiting to go to the war in Europe. There were few lights in those yards and every now and then there'd be a big splash when a sleepy soldier walked off a pier.
 
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