Rockford's Southwest Side Looks to Revitalize Amtrak Train Depot

By: Rebecca Burlette
By: Rebecca Burlette

As the Southwest side of Rockford begins to undergo a major face-lift, there's still one eyesore that can't be touched.

The abandoned Amtrak train depot on South Main Street is surrounded by litter and burnt down buildings. Since the Canadian National Railroad acquired the depot the property has steadily fallen to the wayside.

But the Greater Rockford Transportation Coalition is hoping to change that. They'd like to revitalize the land and possibly build a railroad museum, community center or even restore passenger service to the area. But first they have to get permission to work on the land.

They’re looking at three options. To either buy the land, lease it, or get permission to cosmetically restore it.

Fifth Ward Alderman Victory Bell plans to start negotiations with the Canadian National Railway next week. They're hoping to reach an agreement by the summer.


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