Washington Union Station is one of the country’s first great union railroad terminals. Designed by renowned architect Daniel Burnham, the station opened on October 27, 1907 and was completed in April 1908.
During its heyday in the early 1940s, Union Station was a thriving transportation hub serving up to 42,000 passengers daily. After 1945, conditions deteriorated quickly. The demand on transportation during World War II wore greatly on the station, and repairs were often done inexpensively, diminishing the station’s elegance. Public trends shifted from rail to cars and planes for long-distance travel, which further diminished rail passenger revenues, station activity and the feeling of excitement that once percolated through the building.
In 1983, the United States Secretary of Transportation established a public/private partnership that funded the $160 million-dollar restoration of the station. The completion of this project in 1988 saw the station reopened with 3 levels of retail space.
Washington Union Station is served by Maryland's MARC commuter trains, Virginia's VRE commuter trains, and Amtrak, connecting the nation's capital with Virginia, Philadelphia, New York and Boston. (Washington DC – April 15, 2022)