Grand Junction Depot

Year Listed: 2010
County: Mesa County
Construction Date: 1906
Threat When Listed: Demolition by Neglect – Vacant

Built in 1906, the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad Depot in Grand Junction opened on September 18, 1906, the same day that the tragic earthquake struck San Francisco. In fact, the first people through the Depot were not rail passengers, but rather refugees fleeing the nearly destroyed city. Physicians attended to the ill and injured, while volunteers served food, set up cots and handed out clothing as needed. The Depot was a most magnificent refugee camp. Designed by famed Chicago architect Henry J. Schlacks in the Italian Renaissance style, the Grand Junction Depot was considered to be the finest depot of its size in the West. Constructed of white brick with fine terra cotta details, the Depot featured a glass passenger canopy, large arched stained-glass windows, and an interior with 22-foot ceilings, solid oak trim and plaster pilasters. The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reported at the time of opening that the Depot was “…a credit to a city five times as large. The putting into service of this splendid railroad building marks an important era of local history.”  The Grand Junction Depot was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1992.

The Depot fell out of service in the 1980s and has been vacant since.  Some time before 1930, the magnificent waiting room was converted to two levels in order to accommodate offices on the second floor. The second floor was subsequently removed, which has left vicious scars that require substantial restoration of the original plaster details. In addition, electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems need complete updating in order to accommodate a new use for the Depot.  In the early 2000s, the owners of the Depot had planned a full rehabilitation and restoration of the building with the intention of operating a brew pub; however, the economic crisis dashed those plans and as a result the Depot was foreclosed upon and was bank-owned for a period. A “Friends of the Grand Junction Union Station” group organized applied for and received a grant from the State Historical Fund to complete a historic structures assessment.

Colorado Preservation, Inc. worked with the friends group and the bank in order to assist in finding a preservation-minded buyer, while also collaborating with the City of Grand Junction in an effort to use the rehabilitation of the Depot as a catalyst for revitalization of the surrounding area.  The Grand Junction Depot was purchased in 2015 and rehabilitation work has begun.

Additional Links:



Donate to CPI

We hope you will extend your appreciation for Colorado's past into an investment in its future by making a tax-deductible gift today.

Featured Project

4 Bar 4 Ranch

Homesteaded in 1895 by Dick McQueary to provide a stop for the Georgetown Stage Line, the 320-acre 4 Bar 4 Ranch has strong ties to Grand County and Colorado's heritage. The Georgetown Stage Line traveled on the road through the 4 Bar 4 Ranch from Idaho Springs to Hot Sulphur Springs over Berthoud Pass. In 1895 a roadhouse and stage stop were constructed on the ranch. The hotel and barn were constructed using trees from the Ranch property, and the hotel remained open for travelers coming over Berthoud Pass by horseback and wagon until 1913. With the coming of the automobile, the roadway over Berthoud Pass and through the 4 Bar 4 Ranch was considered an integral part of the Trans-Continental “Midland Trail” highway. Following the closing of the stage line, the ranch continued to host travelers until 1912 or 1913 when it was purchased and converted into a Ford Motor Company . Ford vehicles were sold here until 1917, when Harry Larkin purchased the ranch site. Today emergency efforts are underway to ensure it survives through the winter. Donations are in need. To learn more, contact Jennifer Orrigo Charles at

Join our Email List