They do not need nor want a place to sell tickets. What is needed is a place where tourists want to stop for a breather and a place to change crews. Tourists like old stations.
Well, in that case, what is needed is a place where the tourists will want to stay for the day and explore the area more, rather than just step out for a breather and get back on the train and take off again. And lets face it, that whole area needs revamping. A lot of it is overgrown with weeds and ugly parking lots and beaten up old industrial buildings. Hardly a place where one would want to spend time at. But i suppose it takes years to create something fresh and new. And I still think they should tear that old dump (railway station) down and start over. The building is finito.
A nice restaurant with a train heritage theme type concept might go good there. Especially with the new condo complexes that are around there
On another note, there are tourist $$ to be made from the "rail history" groups around North American. "Old train fans" are a large group. Example: friends of mine who visited me in Nanaimo last summer and dropped a couple of thousand here. Smaller amount in Port Alberni (I think) but the guy was offered a job with some rail museum or similar installation there, because of his knowledge of old trains and particularly his skill in putting back together an old pile of boards and rusting metal into a rail car, a caboose, a locomotive. He's one of those Americans who could be mistaken for a Canadian, you know the type? That kind of guy. He'd have loved to take the job, but not about to leave behind children and grandchildren in the States. More tourist $$ spent in Duncan, looking at their rail memorabilia. And mucho dollars spent in Victoria, where he and she, planning to marry, bought one engagement ring and two wedding rings (his is hinged, which I'd never heard of before, but makes it easy to get the ring over enlarging, aging knuckles.) Between the three rings, that ran to about $8,000. They said they had never seen rings as good in the States, and that's saying something.
I'd estimate that between the two of them they spent $15,000+ in Canada, and that money wouldn't have come if it weren't for old rail cars, stations, etc. They're coming back this summer, because she's having a wedding dress custom made in Victoria. That's more money coming into Canada. My best guess on the dress alone would run $3,000. And then the money for accommodation in Victoria, meals, all the rest of it.
None of that money would have come into Canada if it hadn't been for what we do have in the way of rail history museums, restored trains, etc. Some people are nuts about that stuff, and will pay big bucks to travel to see it, particularly the old Nanaimo rail station returned to its former glory.
I was in the downtown area this morning and took a peek at the work in progress at the Nanaimo train station. It is an active construction site and I was not able to enter the grounds but I took some pics of the building as I passed by. It looks like the new shingles are up!
Here's a couple of the other side of the building. Not the greatest photos I know but I'll post them anyway.
thanx for the pix you guys....so what kinda idiots designed the biulding to the north of the train station.....sheesh!.....don't we hand enough bricks allready and those ungodly colour yuck........stanley strazza
I think worrying about this train station and the rail line in general is like flogging a dead horse. Neither get much use now (or will get much use in the future) but millions will have to be poured in just to maintain it. There seems to be a few enthusiasts that will do anything to make a go of the rail line but most people seem to be indifferent to it at best. Even after the money is poured in, the public will just continue to drive their cars to Victoria or wherever. The money could be better put to use elsewhere.
I can confirm re the coal shoot and the oldest clankiest furnace you ever heard. It used to be one scary basement. I am sure they changed it. I am eager to see it too although than dark brown is not the cheeriest color I agree it will hopefull look togther in the end.
wouldnt it cost less to maintain with repairs done? It was not in the greatest shape before the fire so even some insulation should be a savings.
(pic) Keep warm, and winter well.