There was much controversy going down in the East Bay Area and more specifically in the Tri Valley, and unsurprisingly it involved a tampering with a bit of history. The historic train depot in Livermore California is 125 years old, and has been used as a place where tickets were sold to cattle ranchers, farmers and traders moving plants, cattle any other such goods by rail.
The 1872-built depot was actually relocated over a five hour period in the middle of the night on a Sunday morning, July 16, 2017. It was moved from the South L Street location – where it stood for a century and a quarter to it’s new “home” at 2500 Railroad Avenue.
The project took months in planning and cost more than $3 million to execute. But the restoration work has only just begun. Historical renovations will continue to take place and it is hoped that much of the charm of this small depot will be maintained in the new facelift.
When the small building was moved, it had to be cut in half, as it was too long to transport as one unit. It was transported all the way down to Railroad Avenue, where the slow-moving motorcade passed through two sets of traffic lights (that had been switched off as part of road closures), a traffic signal that had been temporarily removed, in case the depot came too close, and even underneath some power lines, that the local electricity company had raised just for the move.
Here is a great video of the move:
It had been a massive project, which required some meticulous planning. But despite some objections, locals and historians are thankful that it is still even here. In the past, it has been home to a restaurant, a dance studio and a real estate office, before being closed down in 1973 and earmarked for the bulldozers.
This gave rise to a movement known as the Livermore Heritage Guild, a historic appreciation society that was unhappy with the sheer volume of old heritage buildings being knocked down in Livermore. There were no longer any railroad tracks outside the depot, so it seemed the historic depot was either doomed to destruction or moved to a place where it can continue its legacy.
Thankfully, many from the guild were happy that the 125-year old piece of history kept its life in a new location next to the railroad tracks. We look forward to seeing the changes and restorations set to be made for the important Livermore landmark.