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Historical Downtown Bloomington Walking Tour
Item 2 of 11

The former Illinois Central Railroad Freight Depot played an integral role in Bloomington's development in the early 20th century. Illinois Central Railroad built it in 1906 and its purpose was solely to facilitate the transportation of freight goods rather than passengers. The depot was therefore designed with efficiency and functionality in mind; there are no decorative elements. In recent years a restaurant operated here but it has since closed. As of early 2017 the building appears to be unused. Given its role in the city's history, the depot was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.

  • The Illinois Central Railroad Freight Depot was built in 1906 and operated until 1963.
Illinois Central, which was the second railroad to arrive in the city, helped greatly with the limestone and furniture industries. The ground floor of the building is raised a few feet off the ground so goods could be easily transferred to wagons. Activity at the depot reached its peak in the 1920s but steadily declined thereafter as vehicle transport began to overtake railroads. The station closed in 1963. Two restaurants have called the building home since then.
Bo ruff, Katherine. "Illinois Central Railroad Freight Depot." National Park Service - National Register of Historic Places. June 23, 1983.