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My fondess memories of Central Terminal was during WWII when my Mom and brother and sisters went down to the station to greet my Dad when he came home from the Army and my oldest brother when he came back from the Navy serving in Europe. My husband first job was with the NY Central RR and we had passes to travel on the trains. We would go to NY City for the weekend and see the Broadway plays, shop and arrive back in the beautiful Central Terminal with it bison staute. It was a grand building and such a same it never was kept up. As a child I felt like I was in a palace when we went there.
Henry M. Schroeder
My grandfather, who worked for the DL&W Railroad, would take me there as a young boy to see the trains. We took trains from there to Virginia numerous times to visit friends. I last took a train from there about 1977 to visit friends in Detroit. I grew up a few blocks from the terminal on Rother Ave. Now the area resembles Beirut. Something need to be done about the blight that is killing the area. I don't know if a new use for the terminal would revitalize the area, but perhaps a wider plan, with vision, might.
My only memories of the train station are about 23 years old. I used to visit my grandmother in Syracuse and my favorite way to get there was by train. Even then, the station was quite empty. But boy, was it beautiful.
James M. Austin
Buffalo wouldn't recognize a good thing if it turned around and bit it on the fanny. The restoration of the Central terminal would creat an absolutely fabulous landmark attraction for Buffalo. Although, given the location, condition, and overall physical properties of the site, it would be a very ambitious and speculative project to say the least.
Jason F. Flores
I do not have any memories, but from what I have seen, the building is in dire need of some sort of federal program to restore it. I cannot believe that the city of Buffalo is going to stand by and let another major piece of architecture fall to the ground and be destroyed by careless owners and vandals. If I owned the building, I would try to persuade Amtrak to start using the building again (obviously after some major renovations have been done), set up a Train museum, run tour groups through the building (such as school field trips, out of towners, etc.), and try to set up some sort of businesses in the tower.
I took a similar tour of the facilities in the late 1970s when there were still trains stopping at the station. I went upstairs as well and while the condition was better than your pictures describe it today - it was like a ghost town. I have some slides of the day. Went thru the Railway Express Bldg as well. I had many of the same feelings you did when I toured. The offices upstairs had old calandars from the 1950s and only a couple were occupied.
I am a theatre artist from New York and have done a number of site specific performances there and in Brooklyn. When I saw the station I was deeply moved. It is a true American Ruin. I do not know how or who would help me but I am determined to do a large performance in the Central Station. Currently I am workshopping an adaptation of Dante's Inferno and this is what I intend to do there.
Yes, I do have fond memories of the Terminal...my then boyfriend was transported to Fort Dix, NJ in the mid-60s via the terminal...the terminal brings back the time of my teens, dating, Beach Boys, Villa Maria high school, my youth. I am truly saddened to see its demise...to me, the Central Terminal is just as majestic, if not more than the Grand Central Station in New York City.
Read many stories on Central Terminal and finally by accident came upon it in person. It is a beautiful building. Shameful that it's dying if not already dead. I do hope to see the Central Terminal come back to life someday. It would be the biggst triumph for the city of Buffalo. No Superbowl or Stanley Cup could compare to the day Central Terminal comes alive again.
I remeber taking the train to Batavia for a wedding when I was a small boy. Another was a trip to Niagara Falls with my godfather. I had good grades in at school 69 and he wanted to treat me. I still have some photos somwhere of that trip. I believe I had a check jacket and short brim cap on. What a shame to see the building in such disrepair. Too bad no one had the foresight to make it a tourist attraction. Despite living in Saginaw for 26 yrs -- BUFFALO is still home and I am still proud to say I was born and raised there. I had to leave to work in the early 70's. I come back to vist at least once a year.
I used to wait with my mother for my father to arrive from work at the terminal. He was originally a fireman then later an engineer on the New York Central Railroad as was my grandfather. Lots of memories of that grand old building.
I am too young to have memories, but I love the building, it is beautiful. In my opinion Buffalo has let a landmark with potential to give Buffalo some recognition slip away. Its a shame. Buffalo has a trend of letting things such as this slip away and then try to rescue it when it is too late. Masiello should have taken a more stern stand on the person who let it get this bad.
The building is the most beautiful piece of architecture in Buffalo.
I have no memories of the Terminal, but I was in Toronto, and they have a similar station that opened in 1927. Toronto's Union Station and the Central Terminal are set up the same way. The lobbies are constructed basically the same.
What a sad vision I have seen of this station on 4/30/99. I had only seen pictures of the terminal in better days. It was 'ghostly' to see it in person and the condition it is in now. What a sad commentary on today's society that people have no respect or concern for our past history. This building is a monument to an era long gone bye, one that we can not re-create. This building should be preserved, utilized, and heralded as a surviving example of our glorius industrial past.
Here's a novel idea. How about making it a train station again? The Washington DC terminal should be used as an example. Move Amtrak BACK to the terminal, restore the concourse area for shops and stuff, and how about business offices too? Get Donald Trump involved and he can make a TRUMP TOWERS of Buffalo! (wink wink) Seriously, it should be used for a combo of things, including retail, train station, museum/art, and civic pride. The city of Buffalo should help with funds, tax breaks, etc...and allow it to be part of the community again. Not ALL of the complex needs to be restored. The main station area, yes, the REA express, no. This may help in the costs and useage of this property.
I see it rising above the city as I drive along the thruway. I stare at it in wonder - wishing to see it up close, but I never have.
When I attended college in Buff. in the 70's (one of the best times in my life) I often took the train home to Amsterdam, NY and have many fond memories of the terminal. I have passed it by and have even gone back with my kids to show them. I am happy to see that many people have similar memories and feel strongly about it's importance. Good luck with your efforts. Also, the pictures were strangely sad but excellent.
I think it is an embarrassment to live in a city that is allowing such a landmark to be vandalized and destroyed. I am from Rochester and moved to Buffalo for college so I have no memories of the terminal, however I believe the terminal should be turned into an upscale hotel and restaurant/bar. I am originally from Scranton, PA and recently visited their old terminal which was turned into a beautiful hotel/restaurant in the early 80s. It is doing quite well and allows people visiting the area to stay in what is the city's most famous historical landmark. Much of the building's original luster was restored and it is gorgeous.
Michael J. Schmid
I went there as a child, and thought it was the biggest building in the world.
Idon`t have any memories of the terminal from yesteryear, but I have witnessed the terminal in the last 10 years. I have not since seen a railroad structure of such beauty. it is really sad to see such a historic site being allowed to rapidly decay. the city of Buffalo should have stepped in long ago to save the building as a historic piece of Buffalo`s history. If they couldn`t afford to refurbish the building, then state assistance should have been asked for, since it was declared a landmark.
My Grandfather was an engineer and my father a switchman. I had been to the terminal many times (left from there for NY the weekend I was engaged). This is a sad state of affairs. I like the the idea of a community. apts, shopping and businesses. Could make a great call center or central computing operation. I think the entire structure could be a place for the young professional to work, shop and play. The terminal was a marvelous place to walk and look around. I did this often in the mid seventies when I would go there to make payments at the railroad credit union. One would have to spend an awful lot of time to capture the splendor of the place. Around every corner was a suprise!!!