Amtrak Arcadia Valley station opens

“Missouri adds Eagle stop,” on page 25 of Trains’ February issue tells how an economic development group based in a trio of communities on Union Pacific’s Texas Eagle route, halfway between St. Louis and Poplar Bluff, Mo., secured matching grants to turn a former Missouri Pacific station into a facility with an accessible platform, sidewalks, and bathrooms. The total cost: $614,096.75. Trains Passenger correspondent Bob Johnston was there for the ribbon cutting and ceremonial “first train” on Nov. 17, 2016.
Bob Johnston
The Missouri Pacific built this handsome brick structure on its Iron Mountain subdivision in Arcadia, Mo., near the town’s boundary with nearby Ironton, in 1941 to replace older stations in each town. The full-service facility with round-the-clock operators hosted St. Louis-Texas streamliners like the Sunshine Special, Southerner, and Texas Eagle, as well as locals carrying mail and express. Trains began bypassing the station in 1968 and MoPac service on the line didn’t survive past the May 1971 Amtrak takeover. The station subsequently served as a restaurant, antique shop, and picture framing business before Our Town Tomorrow purchased it in 2006 for $171,000 and turned it into a museum and visitors center, which it still is today. The quest to reactivate the station on Amtrak’s Texas Eagle route began in 2011, when Carol Kelsheimer, president of the organization, began seeking grants to replace a deteriorated platform with Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant construction and lighting. After all funding and approvals were secured, ground was broken on April 30, 2016 for platform construction.
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