Historic Amtrak Station
Photo taken by kjfishman in January 2021
"The La Plata Amtrak station is a restored Art Deco style depot constructed of wood and brick. The original passenger and freight depot, built in 1887, was in need of replacement during World War II, but building materials were not readily available. In 1945, after a fire burned portions of the building, the interior and exterior were remodeled and modernized in the popular Art Deco style. The remodeling actually preserved the original building within the inner and outer layers.
The station declined gradually until 1996, when a coalition of the Friends for La Plata Preservation and the NEMO Model Railroad Club began renovating the building exterior. Through volunteer labor and money from individual donations, this work was completed in 2001; the interior has also been gradually restored.
Funding for the restoration work was obtained through a variety of sources: $2,500 for technical assistance from the Great American Stations Foundation; $41,000 through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s TEA-21 program, which was administered through the Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission and required 25 percent matching funds; $24,250 from the Missouri legislature; and $14,000 in private donations raised by the Friends of La Plata Preservation, including $7,000 from the Surbeck Charitable Trust.
Upkeep of the station is now shared between Amtrak and the American Passenger Rail Heritage Foundation (APRHF). Between 2010 and 2013, with grants and monies received from the Missouri Department of Transportation and other organizations, the APRHF has installed new gutters, repaired doors and painted the depot. Historically accurate Santa Fe Railway logos–a cross within a circle–have been installed on each end of the building, along with new platform benches. The APRHF continues to seek grants for station improvements and also organizes fundraisers to support a special fund for station maintenance."
As of 2019, the station is served daily by Amtrak's Southwest Chief between Chicago and Los Angeles.