Leisure and Tourstourism

Train Stations Around the World


Cities throughout the world began to create grand train stations to welcome and wow global tourists with locomotives in the nineteenth century. Top architects and engineers were commissioned to construct three-dimensional works of art that showcased their abilities in train stations. While many of these ancient structures remain in use, some contemporary train stations have been built, leaving a lasting heritage of train station design. Here are some of the most magnificent train stations ever constructed.

Kanazawa Railway Station

Kanazawa Station serves as the train hub for the city of the same name in far western Japan. The modern station, which was constructed in 2005 as a substantial extension of the old 1950s facility, is renowned for its large glass dome known as the Motenashi Dome. The dome, designed by architect Ryz Shirae, shelters travelers from storms, earning the term “motenashi,” or “hospitality.”

The enormous wooden gate at the building’s entryway is perhaps the most well-known aspect of Kanazawa Station. Tsuzumi Gate is a construction in the shape of a torii gate (which sits in front of Japanese temples and marks the passage from one world to another). The gate takes its name from the tsuzumi drum used in Noh theater, a centuries-old art style that flourished in Kanazawa, and its two twisted pillars also resemble the drum.

Train Station Atocha

The steel and glass Atocha Station in Madrid is divided into two sections—the old and the new—each of which has been restored and enlarged multiple times. The original station, which was completed in 1852, is most renowned for the late-19th-century extension of the roughly 500-foot-long arched roof designed by Henry Saint James. The historic edifice not only houses many businesses and offices but also houses a vast tropical garden with hundreds of plants. The contemporary terminal, which was built in the 1980s and expanded in 1992, is used to run high-speed trains as well as local and regional commuter trains.

Central Station of Antwerp

Antwerp Central Station is the principal train station in the city that bears its name. The hub, built between 1895 and 1905, was the original endpoint of the train route between Brussels and Antwerp. It was later rebuilt into a through station, although the original building is still nearly entirely intact.

Belgian architect Louis Delacenserie created the magnificent stone edifice and the big glass dome above the waiting area in a combination of styles, most notably Neo-Renaissance and Art Nouveau. Clément Van Bogaert designed the 144-foot-tall train hall made of iron and glass, which occupies an area of over 40,000 square feet.

Central Station in Berlin

The Berlin Central Station, or Berlin Hauptbahnhof, opened in 2006 on the site of the former Lehrter Stadtbahnhof. The station’s plans were initially conceived immediately after the collapse of the Berlin Wall, as part of the city’s reunification effort. The building is divided into two levels for regular train passengers and three levels for business and connection trips. The basic shape of the station is formed by a 1,053-foot-long east-to-west glass concourse crossed by a 524-foot-long north-to-south hall. The solar-powered roof of Berlin Central Station includes a variety of stores and offices.

International St. Pancras Station

The St. Pancras International station in London, which first opened for passengers in 1868, was created in the gothic style of the time in two parts: the front façade and the station itself. The columnless station, designed by William Henry Barlow, is made of iron and glass and stands 100 feet tall and approximately 700 feet long. The brick front of St. Pancras International, which includes a hotel and clock tower, was built by architect George Gilbert Scott.

Terminal Chhatrapati Shivaji

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, built in 1878, mixes Victorian Gothic Revival architecture with Indian architectural elements. Located in the heart of Mumbai, the station’s exterior is dominated by classical Indian motifs like as turrets and pointed arches. The complex stone carvings of flora and animals, as well as the abundant use of polished granite and Italian marble, are hallmarks of the Gothic style. The two columns in the entry gate, one capped with a lion symbolizing Britain and the other with a tiger representing India, are possibly the most visible manifestations of cultural dualism. The station was renamed Victoria Terminus in 1996, after the British queen, to recognize the first ruler of the Maratha Empire, who dominated major areas of Indiabefore British imperial dominance.

Union Station in Chicago

Chicago Union Station, built in the Roman and Greek-inspired Beaux-Arts style, opened in 1925. The sumptuous Great Hall is undoubtedly the most remarkable feature of the limestone edifice constructed by Daniel Burnham. The huge space is 219 feet wide and 115 feet tall, with a barrel-vaulted skylight. Throughout the 2010s, Amtrak’s Chicago Union Station received substantial improvements.

Transportation Hub at the World Trade Center

Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey wanted to construct a new, permanent rail and subway station to replace the demolished World Trade Center station. New Yorkers were introduced to the World Trade Center Transportation Hub in early 2016, after 13 years of utilizing a temporary terminal. Oculus, the new station house built by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, includes white, rib-like beams that reach up from the building’s exterior and interlock 160 feet above the floor. From a distance, the World Trade Center Transportation Hub seems to be a white dove in flight, representing peace and rebirth.

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