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San Bernardino Santa Fe Depot
San Bernardino, CA
SanBernardinoStationStreetside.jpg
Streetside of San Bernardino Santa Fe Depot in 2006
Location 1170 West Third Street
San Bernardino, California
United States
Coordinates 34°06′15″N 117°18′35″W / 34.10417°N 117.30972°W / 34.10417; -117.30972Coordinates: 34°06′15″N 117°18′35″W / 34.10417°N 117.30972°W / 34.10417; -117.30972
Owned by San Bernardino Associated Governments
Line(s) BNSF Railway Cajon / San Bernardino Subdivisions
Platforms 1 side platform (Amtrak)
3 island platforms (Metrolink)
Tracks 1 (Amtrak)
6 (Metrolink)
Connections Amtrak Thruway Motorcoach; 19A (to Hemet) and 19B (to Indio)
Other information
Station code SNB (Amtrak)
History
Opened July 15, 1918 (1918-07-15)
Rebuilt 2004
Traffic
Passengers (2017) 12,035 Increase 3.94% (Amtrak)
Services
Preceding station BSicon LOGO Amtrak2.svg Amtrak Following station
Riverside Southwest Chief Victorville
toward Chicago
Preceding station Metrolink icon.svg Metrolink Following station
Riverside–Downtown
toward Oceanside
Inland Empire–Orange County Line San Bernardino–Downtown
Terminus
Rialto San Bernardino Line
Former services
Preceding station BSicon LOGO Amtrak2.svg Amtrak Following station
Fullerton Desert Wind
Discontinued in 1997
Victorville
toward Chicago
Pomona Las Vegas Limited
Discontinued in 1976
Barstow
toward Las Vegas
Preceding station Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Following station
Rialto Main Line Devore
toward Chicago
Colton Crossing Main Line
Terminus Redlands Loop Arrowhead
toward Redlands
Colton Crossing
toward San Jacinto
San Jacinto Branch Terminus
Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Passenger and Freight Depot
Location San Bernardino, California
Built 1918
Architect W.A. Mohr; Cresmer Manufacturing Co.
Architectural style Mission Revival/Moorish Revival/Spanish Colonial Revival
NRHP reference No. 01000025
Added to NRHP 2 February 2001

The San Bernardino Santa Fe Depot (Amtrak designation San Bernardino, Metrolink designation San Bernardino Depot) is a Mission Revival Style passenger rail terminal in San Bernardino, California, United States. It has been the primary station for the city, serving Amtrak today, and the Santa Fe and Union Pacific Railroads in the past. Until the mid-20th century, the Southern Pacific Railroad had a station 3/4 of a mile away. It currently serves one Amtrak (Southwest Chief) and two Metrolink lines (Inland Empire–Orange County Line and San Bernardino Line). The depot is a historical landmark listed on the National Register of Historic Places as Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Passenger and Freight Depot.

Early history

Through its subsidiary California Southern Railroad, the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (ATSF) first built a two-and-a-half-story wooden structure on the site in 1886 to replace a converted boxcar that had been used as a temporary station. The 1886 building was mostly destroyed in a fire just after midnight 17 November 1916.

In the pre-Amtrak era the station not only had Santa Fe Railway trains, it also had Union Pacific Railroad trains. The trains of both railroads served disparate destinations in the west and in central United States.

Named trains in 1960 included:

  • Santa Fe:
    • Chief (Los Angeles to Chicago via Albuquerque and Kansas City)
    • El Capitan (Los Angeles to Chicago via Albuquerque and Kansas City)
    • Grand Canyon (Los Angeles to Chicago via Albuquerque and Kansas City)
    • Super Chief (Los Angeles to Chicago via Albuquerque and Kansas City)
  • Union Pacific:
    • Challenger (Los Angeles to Chicago via Ogden, UT)
    • City of Los Angeles (Los Angeles to Chicago via Ogden, UT)
    • City of St. Louis (Los Angeles to St. Louis via Ogden, UT and Kansas City)

Architecture and design

OldSanBernardinoStationTrackside
Trackside of the San Bernardino Santa Fe Depot

Local politicians requested ATSF to build a new station on a much larger scale than the previous. The new station, designed by architect W.A. Mohr, cost $800,000 (equivalent to $11,321,000 in 2018) to build and was officially opened on 15 July 1918. At that time, it was the largest railway station west of the Mississippi River. The San Bernardino Sun wrote "Santa Fe's Station to be the finest in the west." A few years after the depot's opening, an extension was added that included a Harvey House and living quarters.

The historic depot is built in the Mission Revival Style with Moorish Revival and Spanish Colonial Revival features. Utilizing hollow clay blocks, a red tile roof and stucco exterior, the depot was designed to withstand fire. Four domed towers are built around a large center lobby with polished tile walls and floor. The interior includes handcrafted high beams, coffered ceilings and decorative column capitals.

Decline and renovation

The station saw heavy use throughout the 20th century. But like with many railroad stations, there was a gradual decline in usage with the advent of automobiles, buses and air travel. The Harvey House closed in the 1950s. In 1971, the ATSF transferred its passenger service to Amtrak. From 1979 to 1997 Amtrak's Desert Wind (Los Angeles-Las-Vegas-Denver-Chicago) made stops at the station. Metrolink began service to the station on May 17, 1993.

San Bernardino station, 1915
Trackside of the original San Bernardino Santa Fe Depot, 1915

In 1992, San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) purchased the historic depot from Santa Fe. While Amtrak and Metrolink stopped using the depot in favor for a much smaller newer structure on the west side of the older one, SANBAG acquired over $15 million from federal and local grants and funds to begin an extensive restoration of the historic depot beginning in 2002. In 2004, SANBAG and Metrolink moved some of their offices there. After renovations are complete, SANBAG will share ownership with the City of San Bernardino and both agencies intend on leasing space in it. The historic depot waiting area, along with a new snack shop, opened again for Amtrak and Metrolink passengers on 2 May 2008. A new elevator, platforms, tracks, and an overpass were built in March and April 2017 as part of the Downtown San Bernardino Passenger Rail Project, an extension of Metrolink service to the San Bernardino Transit Center.

Services

Metrolink

All San Bernardino Line trains and Inland Empire-Orange County Line trains stop at the station.

Amtrak

Amtrak's Southwest Chief, which travels between Los Angeles and Chicago, Illinois, stops thrice-weekly in each direction here.

Platforms and tracks

Amtrak platform  Southwest Chief toward Los Angeles (Riverside–Downtown)
 Southwest Chief toward Chicago (Victorville)
Metrolink platforms  Inland Empire–Orange County Line toward Oceanside (Riverside–Downtown)
 San Bernardino Line toward L.A. Union Station (Rialto)
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