Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Glendale Train Station, also known as the Glendale Transportation Center and also used to be known as Tropico. The station is one of the stops on the Pacific Surfliner, which travels from San Diego to San Luis Obispo and back, Amtrak's bus route from Los Angeles to Bakersfield, Metrolink's Ventura County line from Los Angeles to Montalvo and Metrolink's Antelope Valley Line.
Glendale was the 37th busiest in 2010, boarding or detraining an average of 100 passengers daily.
10 Pacific Surfliner trains pass through the station daily, 54 Metrolink trains serve the station weekdays, 12 Antelope Valley Line trains serve the station on Saturdays. There is no Metrolink service on the Ventura County line on weekends and Antelope Valley Line trains stop 6 times on Sundays.
At the station is one side platform and one island platform. There are three tracks.
The station was originally known as the Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot, which was built by the Southern Pacific Railroad in the Mission Revival and Spanish Colonial Revival architectural styles in 1923. The depot had replaced the Atwater Tract office dating from 1883.
In 1868, the area of which Atwater Village and most of modern day Glendale was bought by W.C.B. Pemberton for the price of $51. Los Angeles decided to have a railroad line run through Glendale, so the citizens of Glendale would have easier access to and from Los Angeles. After a railroad line was built through Glendale, Los Angeles had a train station built near Atwater Village and gave the station the name of Atwater Tract office because of its location next to Atwater Village.
Atwater Tract station existed until January, 1922, when Glendale decided it needed a larger station to serve more passengers. Soon after the closing, the Atwater Tract Station was demolished. Many workers came to Glendale to get a job building the new station. Most of the men who built the new station stayed in Atwater Village. In 1923, the Glendale Train station was completed and was renovated in 1999.
The city of Glendale bought the depot from Southern Pacific in 1989 for $3.5 million and acquired adjacent properties to create an intermodal center. In 1997, the Glendale train station was listed on the National Register of Historic places Restoration of the historic building and the construction of other elements of the intermodal center cost approximately $6 million.
The Glendale station was built for the Southern Pacific Railroad by Kenneth MacDonald, Jr and Maurice Couchot. The station features ornate front and rear entrances, each with heavily carved panel doors bracketed by twisted half columns supporting a curved ornamental wrought iron balcony, that is false. The station is painted in traditional white painted terra-cotta. The single story stucco sided building is traditionally rectangular in shape pierced by larger, deep set and delicately arched windows protected by original iron grill work on the outside with a scalloped overhang. Flanking wings of recent construction are roofed in red barrel tiles. Ornate pierced ironwork supports the Southern Pacific logo over the front door.
Inside is a terra cotta tiled floor and white washed walls which continue the Spanish style. The ceiling is supported by exposed and decoratively painted wooden beams, with a checkered tile footing around the walls. Traditional double-sided polished wood benches provide indoor seating.
On the 9.5 acre area surrounding the station, a 750 space parking lot was built, landscaping and lighting installed and a loading bay for 10 buses was established.
The southwestern portion of Glendale, where the train station is located was organized into the separate town of Tropico. It was separated from Rancho San Rafael. Tropico was known for its production of barley, nuts, dairy, poultry and fruit, especially strawberries.
Electrified interurban rail came through Glendale in 1904, called the Pacific Electric and was laid along a strip of land belonging to Leslie Coombs Brand.
It was hoped that the Southern Pacific Depots's restoration would spark redevelopment. Glendale has managed to retain other historical structures to create three historical districts.