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Fate of former Morrisburg railway station undetermined

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Fate of former Morrisburg railway station undetermined

By Phillip Blancher, Local Journalism Initiative ReporterThe Morrisburg Leader

Wed., June 2, 20213 min. read

Early Newspaper

MORRISBURG – A local landmark built at some stage in the St. Lawrence Seaway constructing is in possibility of being torn down.

The Canadian Nationwide Railways station off County Avenue 31 used to be fair fair nowadays boarded up by the firm, and an ATCO-model portable constructing used to be positioned on residing for staff to use. This prompted quandary by historians and native railfans that the station will likely be demolished.

The station, which used to be constructed in 1956-57 at some stage in the St. Lawrence Seaway project is one of easiest two surviving stations from that generation. The station replaced an 1855-built stone station that used to be positioned shut to the veil day Extensive Tiger on Nation Avenue 2 in the village. The other surviving constructing from this generation is in Cornwall which is easy in use by VIA Rail, Canada’s national passenger rail firm.

Morrisburg and Cornwall are two of 5 stations constructed at the time by CNR. Iroquois, Long Sault, and Ingleside every had a station of the identical occupy as Morrisburg’s in the project.

“At this time, there don’t seem like any plans to rupture the constructing or to promote it,” mentioned Canadian Nationwide spokesperson Daniel Salvatore.

CN discontinued traditional passenger stops at the four Seaway stations in 1966. The Morrisburg station persevered to be used for excursions by the railway for Expo 67 in Montréal. There were also traditional excursions bustle into the 1970’s bringing school children to Upper Canada Village that used the station. CN staff used the constructing afterwards as an office and storage station for upkeep materials except 2020.

Chris Granger, a railway historian and former co-chair of Heritage Cornwall, instructed The Leader that the Morrisburg station occupy is one of the main to give the take into memoir of modernization to railways in the 1950s.

“There are just a few of these station kinds in existence, but no longer in their usual invent,” Granger mentioned.

An historically indispensable event that happened at the station on April 22, 1976 when a CN/VIA Turbotrain field a Canadian rail land wander portray of 140.6 miles per hour. This portray remains in residing easy to this date.

One possibility of leaving the constructing as it is in its mothballed remark is hurt from vandals. This used to be the fate of a equally designed station in Iroquois, which used to be demolished in the early 2000s after indispensable hurt from vandalism.

“[Iroquois] used to be in absolute repulsive form,” Granger mentioned. “Every window used to be broken out of the frames. The seats were gone. Any electrical gear that can maybe well were left in the back of used to be stripped.”

He mentioned that the inner and outside of the constructing were lined in graffiti, and that trash, feces and gigantic garbage love dilapidated mattresses littered the property.

“It used to be a injurious the mess that used to be there.”

Granger mentioned the Morrisburg station has no historical designation that can prevent it being torn down by the railroad. As the railroad is a federally regulated firm, it does no longer want approvals from a neighborhood municipality love South Dundas to rupture structures on its land both. He added that the municipality can launch a search records from for Federal Heritage Designation for the constructing through the Ancient Sites and Monuments Board of Canada.

The Town of Prescott designated its 1855 stone railway station in this form. That station remains on its usual field next to the CN tracks, is owned by the metropolis, and is used by the Grenville County Ancient Society. Granger suggested this or one other preservation option could well well happen.

“I actually were requested if the constructing could well well be moved someplace love the Misplaced Villages Museum,” he defined. “Now we like got moved gigantic stone structures, brick and frame structures, so yes [Morrisburg’s station] could well well be moved there. It could maybe well well even be a upright instance to veil a constructing after the Seaway opened.”

In Granger’s thought, if CN would enable it, the constructing is generally a analysis or archive constructing equal to Prescott.

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“I be mindful an attempt must easy be made to attempt and deal with the station,” he mentioned. “I also think that in doing so, the constructing must easy be repurposed to invent definite a viable existence for it.”

Officials with CN were requested if the firm had any plans for the constructing, no response used to be given.

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Fate of former Morrisburg railway station undetermined