|Richmondís Oldest Railroad
Building in Danger of Demolition
April 1, 2004
For nearly eight years, citizens of
Richmond have been working with four different planning directors, four
city managers (including acting and interim), half a dozen public works
(services) directors, two mayors, a dozen city council members, MTC,
CCTA, Caltrans, the Historic Preservation Advisory Committee, BNSF and
others to save the Santa Fe Reading Room, one of Richmondís oldest
buildings and the only surviving component of the original Atchison,
Topeka and Santa Fe Richmond yards. On May 19, 2003, the Point Richmond
History Association, in its annual meeting, voted 75-0 to support saving
the building. After the settlement of the City of Richmondís litigation
with BNSF over the wigwags, the last impediment was eliminated.
On March 30, 2004, the City Council had the opportunity to take advantage of a one-time and time-sensitive offer from MTC to fund the relocation of the building. The City Council postponed action for a week, possibly losing the MTC funding offer. Several City Council members advocated demolishing the building or allowing BNSF to demolish the building. The City Council will consider this item again on April 6, 2004.
If you care about Richmondís heritage, please contact your City Council members and urge them to support the plan to move this building to a nearby site and sell it to a developer for rehabilitation.
A full report is in the attached PDF file.