June 27, 2014 Union Station Contacts: Michael Tritt - 816-460-2278 email@example.com Nancy Besa - 816-674-4775 BesaPR@icloud.com
Union Station Kansas City -- Celebrating 100th Anniversary – Continues to Write a Rare Success Story Against the odds, Kansas City's historic train station – second largest in US when opened in 1914 -- survives and thrives as special events and new exhibits are prepared for Centennial Celebration. Kansas City, MO – The rare success of Kansas City’s Union Station is attracting substantial interest as Centennial Celebration plans are shared. Included in the unique and important Centennial activities are: • September 5th – Kansas City Celebrates at the Station The free family evening of entertainment and Centennial Kickoff to commemorate 100 years
Live Music Concert Union Station Revealed – The Monument Comes Alive in Breathtaking Outdoor Digital Show with Spectacular Fireworks Finale Presented by Ivy Funds, Waddell & Reed, Inc. and National World War I Museum
• October 30th – Centennial Gala The once-in-a-lifetime exclusive dinner event, celebrating the Station’s history in grand style with world-class entertainment • October 31st – Opening of the Union Station 100-year Historical Exhibition The unveiling of the permanent exhibit that shares Union Station’s 100-year history • November 1st & 2nd – Open House & Re-dedication of Union Station Featuring history tours, sneak peeks of new attractions, entertainment from past and present, and historical trains on display Presented by Bank of America
Union Station History: In the early 1900's, a group of visionary entrepreneurs and 12 railroad company leaders came together to formulate a grand plan, a railroad station to rival any in the United States and beyond. The unlikely location for such a monument was to be along a small creek (OK Creek) which meandered at the edge of a dusty, burgeoning downtown Kansas City. In 1911, construction began on the massive station, designed in the Beaux-Arts architectural style by Chicago architect, Jarvis Hunt. Nearly four years later, on October 30, 1914, Union Station opened to the public. Just after midnight on the morning of Nov. 1, the first train, the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Flyer, steamed into Union Station. Costing nearly $6 million, and part of an expansive $50 million investment by Kansas City Terminal Railroad, Union Station was declared by the Kansas City Star to be “a magnificent building, elaborate in proportions and monumental in appearance”. Immediately, Union Station became a regional hub for commerce and transportation. It also became Kansas City’s civic center for major events and celebrations. The phrase, "meet me under the clock" was coined as it was a unique point of reference inside the massive Union Station. The Station measured two blocks across the front façade, 850,000 square feet, and included a 17-acre campus with all variety of support facilities. Total rail traffic peaked in 1917 during WWI, with 79,368 trains passing through Union Station, including 271 in one day alone. In 1945, again during WWII, passenger traffic hit a record of 678,363 travelers through Union Station, many of who were uniformed military on their way home from overseas duty. What followed for Union Station were decades of intense use, famous visits and occurrences and, eventually, a long decline that would challenge even the brightest business leaders to keep the wrecking balls away, as was the unfortunate fate for far too many of the nation’s grand train stations. In 1996, voters on both the Missouri and Kansas sides of the city voted overwhelmingly for a sales tax to save, restore and redevelop what was an overly neglected and boarded-up Union Station. This bi-state tax, thought to be the first of its kind in the United States, infused $118 million into the total $250 million project. Determination and a grand vision again shaped a story of success that is now a monument known and beloved across the Midwest and beyond. Too many stories from the “Golden Age” of railroading have ended in regret. Not in Kansas City. Today, 1 million people annually walk the marble floors of Union Station, dine in her restaurants, attend meetings, shape future science and technology, and conduct the businesses of living, learning and leveraging our collective and diverse histories. People from all walks of life still line up, with queues often reaching into Grand Hall itself, to catch a train and travel across the plains, along rivers, over mountains and to destinations made equally special by the rhythm of the tracks. -more-
Union Station Kansas City is a survivor. A young Ernest Hemingway and Walter Cronkite—both of whom found their footings at Union Station—forever held special affection for this architectural masterpiece. Jazz greats Count Basie and Charlie Parker paid their dues here before finding international status. Fats Waller died on a train stopped at Union Station. Presidents Eisenhower and Truman made their ways through crowds of supporters in Grand Hall. Even the infamous Kansas City Massacre of 1933 -- involving Frank ‘Jelly’ Nash and several federal agents -- added dramatic moments to Union Station's story. And, this magnificent and monumental example from the “Golden Age” of railroading still has many stories to tell. Union Station invites all of Kansas City – and enthusiasts from across the nation -- to join in the celebration and share in the writing of the next 100-year chapters. This is a success story both rare and worth repeating. ###
History Timeline 1903 The second great Kansas City flood consumes the railroad station in the city's West Bottoms district. Rail executives decide to build a new train station on higher ground and in a more central location. 1906 Twelve railroad companies unite to form the Kansas City Terminal Railroad (KCTR). Chicago architect Jarvis Hunt is selected to design the new Station. 1911 Construction begins on the massive building. Union Station is designed in the beaux-arts architectural style popular in the United States and France in the late 1800s and early 1900s. October 30, 1914 Union Station opens to the public. Just after midnight on the morning of Nov. 1, the first train, the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Flyer, arrives at Union Station. The station cost nearly $6 million and was part of a $50 million investment by KCTR that also included track additions, switching towers, viaducts and bridges. 1917 Rail traffic peaks during WWI-with 79,368 trains passing through the Station, including 271 trains in one day. 1921 All five World War I allied commanders arrive by train at Union Station and meet together for groundbreaking ceremonies for the Liberty Memorial. Located across the street from Union Station, the Liberty Memorial is a monument dedicated to the men and women who served and died in World War I. The memorial was dedicated in 1926. -more-
June 17, 1933 One of the most infamous dates in Kansas City history is the Union Station Massacre. Convicted mobster Frank Nash, under escort by a team of FBI agents and police officers was shot and killed outside the Station during a shootout. Four law enforcement officers were also killed. There are marks on the front of the building that for years were claimed as bullet holes from the shooting, but tests by Kansas City, Mo. police recently showed the marks could not have come from bullets. However, the myth and the mystery of the incident live on. There were various theories that other mobsters had committed the crime, but the only man ever charged was Adam Richetti who died in Missouri's gas chamber. As result of the massacre, Congress strengthened the power of the FBI. 1945 Passenger traffic hits a record 678,363 travelers with a significant number of America's armed forces personnel passing through Union Station on their way home from World War II. 1950-1970 Passenger rail traffic starts to decline as the airline industry grows. 1968 The Fred Harvey Company operations-including the Westport Room restaurant and retail shops close. 1972 Union Station receives federal designation as a protected structure and is placed on the National Register of Historic Places. 1973 Passenger traffic drops to only 32,842 for the year. Only six trains a day pass through the Station. 1974 Kansas City approves a development contract with Trizec, a Canadian redevelopment firm, to develop the Station and surrounding property.
1979-1986 Trizec constructs two office buildings, One and Two Pershing Square, on the property around the Station but is unable to make improvements to the building. 1983 The Station closes except for Amtrak's inflatable bubble inside the Grand Hall and the Lobster Pot restaurant. Amtrak leaves in 1985 and the Lobster Pot closes in 1989. 1988 The city of Kansas City, Mo. initiates legal action against the redevelopment company for failing to redevelop the Station. -more-
1994 The City and Trizec agree to settle their six-year lawsuit. A new not-for-profit corporation, Union Station Assistance Corporation (USAC), is established to own the Station. 1996 Voters in Jackson, Clay and Platte counties in Missouri and Johnson County in Kansas approve a one-eighth of a cent bi-state sales tax to restore and redevelop Union Station and create a science museum. The tax raised $118 million toward the total $250 million project. The remaining money was raised through private donations and federal funds. The passage of the bi-state tax is thought to be the first of its kind in the history of the United States. November 10, 1999 Union Station opens to the public once again. The building, restored to its former glory, now includes shops, restaurants, theaters and Science City, an interactive science center. December 2002 In 2002, Amtrak comes back inside the Station to operate from a renovated $4.6 million passenger boarding and ticketing facility. The U.S. Post Office also sets up an office inside the Station. September 2005 The KC Rail Experience, a permanent exhibit celebrating both the history of the railroads and Union Station, opens. In 2006, Kansas City Southern moves a former train bridge to connect Union Station with the Freight House District that soon evolves into the Crossroads Arts District, also connecting to the burgeoning Downtown development. In 2008, a beautiful 20,000-square-foot exhibit gallery is built on lower level to host the worldclass traveling exhibits, such as Bodies Revealed, Dinosaurs Unearthed, Diana, and Titanic. Revenues from these traveling exhibits add additional sources of funding that help stabilize the Station. In 2010, Union Station’s board and staff recognize that leasing office space inside the Station is another important way to stabilize the Station’s sustainability. Within months, several key civic organizations embrace Union Station as their new home – including the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, Kansas City Area Development Council, Kansas City Area Life Sciences, Kansas City Election Board and UMKC professional development. In 2011, Science City begins and upgrading plan when Burns & McDonnell invests $1.25 million in new exhibits and sponsors The Battle of the Brains contest to get area schools involved in designing another new exhibit. In 2012, Science City welcomes the new Science on a Sphere exhibit featuring a giant hanging sphere that projects images across the sphere and shares programs in earth science, planetary science, nature and weather patterns and other science topics. In 2013, Science City opens The Science of Energy, which was the winning entry from the Battle of the Brains competition, and was designed by students from Olathe North High School. -more-
March 2013, the fully renovated Regnier Extreme Screen Theatre re-opens and begins offering nature films and first-run movies for the first time. The theatre is wired with a 1 gig connectivity, offering the opportunity for live streams on the large screen for special presentations and conferences. Centennial Q&A Q: What are the origins of Union Station? A: Union Station opened to the public on Oct. 30, 1914, although plans began in 1906 and actual construction started on Aug. 27, 1910. Designed by Jarvis Hunt and contracted by the George A. Fuller Company, and assisted by mechanical engineer Martin Schwab, the building of the station itself cost $10.6 million—which was only a portion of the $48 million spent on other aspects of railway development such as roads and bridges. The owners and operators of the station have included the Kansas City Terminal Railway Co. (1914-1974), Trizek Corp. (19741996), Union Station Assistance Corp. (1996-2001), and most recently, Union Station Kansas City Inc. (2001-present) Q: Who worked on the construction of the Station? A: Approximately 500 workers helped in the construction of the station, while five lost their lives to the hard labor. While skilled labor earned 60 cents per hour, unskilled earned only 27.5 to 30 cents by comparison. One little known fact is railway president H. H. Adams’ placement of a tablet containing the names of the workers into the station’s wall during construction in 1912; the whereabouts of the tablet is still unknown today. Q: What are the details of Union Station’s construction? A: Designed in the then-popular style of Beaux Arts, which is a French term for “fine arts,” Union Station reached 850,000 square feet in area, while the entire complex extended a total of 37 acres, or the equivalent of 11 city blocks. The front facade alone stretched the length of two. The station initially contained 900 rooms and 10 levels, reaching six stories high. The original baggage room totaled 75,000 square feet—larger than New York’s famous Grand Central Station. Union Station originally boasted 16 total through-tracks, three windows approximately 40 ft. high, and a train shed that measured 1,370 ft. over the course of eight platforms. By the time of its completion, Union Station was the third largest station in the United States, following NYC’s Grand Central and Pennsylvania Stations, respectively. Q: What are some facts less known about the station? A: The station originally opened with a separate waiting room for immigrants, and an isolation room for convicts and persons with contagious diseases. It also stood as the Corporate Headquarters for the Fred Harvey Company, which managed all retail and restaurant facilities in the station. Union Station processed a staggering amount of 225-300 tons of mail on a daily basis.
Highlight Images Construction
Steam Engines 1934
Opening Day 1914
New Yearâ€™s Eve
Sprint Festival Plaza
Sprint Festival Plaza
1914 - 2014
Centennial O n October 30, 2014, Kansas City will celebrate the 100th anniversary of one of its most historic landmarks. It will be a special time to honor and celebrate this beautiful building that has been an icon of Kansas City for 100 years. As we prepare for this special anniversary, Union Station has assembled a Centennial Celebration Civic Committee. The chairs of this committee are: Donald J. Hall, Jr. Michael R. Haverty and Thomas A. McDonnell. This committee includes community leaders who led the efforts to save, restore, re-open and revive the Station in November 1999. These individuals will be recognized and honored during the Centennial Celebrations.
“I love that my granddaughter wanted to volunteer with me. I also love the memories of taking my grandson to Science City and watching him play and learn,” she said. As a volunteer, mainly helping at the entrance to Science City, Nelson enjoys talking with visitors and answering their questions. Nelson became a Union Station Member during the bi-state campaign to revive the Station and is excited for the upcoming centennial. “It is such an amazing building and I am thrilled it is thriving,” she said.
REMEMBERING A SPECIAL TIME AT THE STATION Longtime Union Station member Marcy Nelson took only one train ride as a child with her grandmother but remembers that Union Station experience fondly. Now, she is a grandmother who volunteers at the station with her granddaughter. Together, they have made many more memories at a place she calls “magnificent.”
2 • Union Station On Track
Below: Crowds enter the Station when she opened her doors in 1914.
3 â€˘ Union Station On Track
JOIN THE CENTENNIAL CELEBRATION
You can join in our special celebration by becoming a Union Station Member, or become one of our Centennial Members. By making a $100 donation, we invite people also to become a Centennial Supporter. For more details about these options, visit unionstation.org/membership. Your support and the support of all Union Station Members is what ensures the Station will thrive for years to come.
TELL US YOUR STORY!
You can also contribute to the Celebration by sharing your favorite memories of Union Station. Visit unionstation.org/100years and click on the link to share your story by August 31, 2014.
4 • Union Station On Track
Above: Workers building the station in 1914. Come see the full construction exhibit, “Building a Monument,” inside the walkway to Crown Center at Union Station.
March 6, 2014
By Matt Campbell, The Kansas City Star, Posted: March 4, 2014 April 11, 2014
KANSAS CITY, Mo — Union Station ended a fourth year in a row with a seven-digit cash surplus in 2013. The continued turnaround after a decade of deficits comes as station officials are making plans to mark the centennial of the depot’s construction later this year. Year-end numbers approved Tuesday by the station’s board of directors showed a $1.8 million surplus before depreciation. That was attributed in part to the “Real Pirates” exhibit, the success of first-run movies on the digital 3-D Extreme Screen and a 17 percent jump in revenue from Science City. Attendance at Science City was up 7 percent last year, and the science center accounted for 40 percent of tickets sold at Union Station. Planetarium attendance and revenue also were up almost 25 percent from the previous year. Officials hope to open two new exhibits at Science City by the end of this year based on winning school entries in the second round of Battle of the Brains. “Science City is our core, our mission,” said Jerry Baber, the station’s financial officer. The Extreme Screen had more than 36,000 people in attendance and took in more than $300,000 in revenue with screenings of “Oz the Great and Powerful” and other films. The station continues to grapple with capital costs, however, including more than $600,000 this year to replace the long escalators to the main floor. They have to be custom built and then reassembled inside the building. The station is looking for sponsors to raise nearly $1.5 million for centennial observances. A gala dinner Oct. 30 will be followed by a two-day public open house with free entertainment the weekend of Nov. 1-2. Tentative plans for a kickoff weekend Sept. 5-7 call for a choreographed program of historical images projected onto the station’s facade, accompanied by fireworks. Station officials also are working with a design firm to develop a permanent exhibit of the depot’s history to include historical objects, interpretive displays and a smartphone app to trigger content at various points throughout the station. They hope to have that completed in time for the centennial.
By Matt Campbell, The Kansas City Star, Posted: November 1, 2013
KANSAS CITY, Mo — Union Station kicks off its centennial celebration Wednesday morning with the first of several unique exhibits. A series of black-and-white photographs detailing the construction of Union Station from 1911-1914 are on display inside the Link, a hallway connecting Union Station to Crown Center. “We have in our own archives a wonderful scrapbook made by someone who was on the construction,” said Denise Morrison, Director of Collections at Union Station. “It is from Day One of construction until we opened, and so these photos make up quite a bit – about half of this photo essay.” Construction on Union Station began in 1911 and when completed, it was the third largest train station in the country, a building President Woodrow Wilson called “the gateway to the West.” “It was probably the biggest construction up to that point in Kansas City. It employed over 500 people, it took three years to do, and it had a huge opening – two days of opening activities.”
Besides digging into the Union Station archives to find photos and artifacts, Morrison also gathered some historical pictures from the KU Edwards Campus. It’s so crisp and so beautiful, and the photographs speak to a time, not so distant, but yet some of them look so old-fashioned that you really do get a sense of magic,” Morrison said. She hopes people from Kansas City and visitors from across the country enjoy this historical retrospective of a building that has dominated the Kansas City skyline for 99 years. “To see it from birth to opening is really spectacular,” Morrison said. “The photos are beautiful, and just to put it all together was really fun to do.” Union Station officials are currently planning a series of celebratory events commemorating its 100th anniversary on October 30, 2014, including a Grand Centennial Gala and re-dedication ceremony in 2014.
Ways To Get Involved In The There are many ways to get involved and we invite you to join with us in this celebration!
Sponsorship Be part of an elite group to help support this once-in-a-lifetime celebration. Your partnership will support all of the Centennial events and help underwrite the permanent new exhibition as well as preserve Kansas City’s historic monument. Details available at unionstation.org/100years or call 816-460-2016.
Share Your Story We know Union Station Kansas City holds very special memories for many people. We invite you to get involved in this celebration by telling us your story – your personal memories – of Union Station. Or, share a story of a friend or family member who had a special memory of Union Station. As part of our 100th Anniversary celebrations, we will share these stories. If you would like to share your story, photo or video, please send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Centennial Membership Become a Centennial Member and enjoy all of the benefits of a regular membership, along with exclusive special invitations to certain Centennial events. See page 9 for Membership details.
Centennial Supporter Union Station depends on the generous support of donors to keep the Station operating at its best. See page 10 for details.
Centennial Volunteer Become part of this historic event! For more information on volunteering for Centennial Celebrations please visit our website at unionstation.org/volunteers.
Attend The Celebration Events Listed On Page 11. UnionStation.org/100Years 8
Show Your Support of Union Station Today! The benefits of membership are huge! Sign up today and don’t miss a thing. Your membership price is fully tax-deductible!
As we lead up to Union Station’s 100th Anniversary on October 30, 2014, we invite you to upgrade to a Centennial Membership. For a small, extra donation to Union Station, your Centennial Membership entitles you to all of the benefits of a regular membership, along with the following special benefits during the 2014 year, including: • Recognition as a Centennial Member on Union Station’s 100th Anniversary website • Recognition in the Union Station On Track magazine 100th Anniversary commemorative edition (fall 2014) • Invitations to Centennial Member Previews to the 100th Anniversary exhibits that will be featured in 2014 • Invitation to attend a Union Station History tour, offered at various times during 2014 • Commemorative Centennial Member card (limited number available) • 100% Fully Tax Deductible Donation
Free & Special Event Benefits
• Free admission to Science City year-round • Free admission to Planetarium shows year-round • Free admission to Quixotic School of Performing Arts workshops on first Sunday of each month in Science City • One bag of FREE popcorn per membership for movies in the Extreme Screen Theatre ($5 value) • Exclusive member events, exhibit previews and member discounts for special events • Subscription to the Union Station On Track quarterly magazine • Subscription to weekly email newsletter and members-only special offers • Free or discounted admission to nearly 300 museums in the U.S. and around the world • Holiday benefits: free mini train rides for small children, free admission to Polar Express PJ party; schedule your time to visit Holiday Express train and Santa; discounted pancake breakfast price
Discounts • A discount of 30% or more to world-class traveling exhibitions • A discount of 50% on tickets to the annual Maker Faire: Kansas City Festival in June • Discounts of 10% or more at Union Station retail stores and restaurants • Discounts on Science City Summer Camp registration
Centennial Membership Prices $100 Single, 2, or 3-4 person Membership $150 5-8 person Membership Photo (left) from left to right: George Guastello, Peggy Dunn, Bob Regnier, and David Gentile celebrating the 99th Anniversary with the opening of this “Building a Monument” exhibit.
Become a Donor to Union Station as a
Union Station relies on the generous support of donors to keep the Station operating at its best. During this Centennial Year, we offer a special opportunity for individuals and families to become a Centennial Supporter. For a $100 fully tax-deductible donation, you will receive: • Commemorative Centennial Supporter Certificate • Historic image of Union Station suitable for framing • Recognition as a Centennial Supporter on Union Station’s 100th Anniversary website • Recognition in the Union Station On Track magazine 100th Anniversary commemorative edition (Fall 2014) • Invitations to Centennial Supporter Previews to the special 100th Anniversary history exhibits that will be featured in 2014 • Invitation to attend a Union Station History tour, offered at various times throughout 2014 • 100% Tax-Deductible Donation
Send a check for $100 made out to Union Station Kansas City to: Centennial Supporter Fund Union Station Kansas City 30 W. Pershing Road, Suite 400 Kansas City, MO 64108
Calendar Of May 25: Celebration at the Station with the Kansas City Symphony Bank of America Celebration at the Station is the largest free Memorial Day Weekend event in the Midwest.
June 28 – 29: Maker Faire Kansas City This family-friendly event brings together Makers, Crafters, Inventors, Hackers, Scientists and Artists for a faire full of fun and inspiration.
September 5: Centennial Celebration Kickoff Kansas City Celebrates the Station will be a free event open to the public, kicking off the Centennial events and ending with a spectacular outdoor digital show and fireworks.
Presented by Ivy Funds, Waddell & Reed, Inc. and National World War I Museum
October 30: Centennial Gala Celebration A one-time exclusive dinner event, celebrating the Station’s history in grand style.
October 31: New 100-Year Exhibit Opening A new permanent exhibition will be unveiled documenting the 100–year history of Union Station and its importance to our community and the nation.
November 1: Re-Dedication Ceremony Honor and celebrate all who built and restored Union Station.
November 1-2: Open House and Celebration Join us for building and history tours, sneak peek visits at Union Station attractions, entertainment from the past and present, and special train displays.
Presented by Bank of America
Union Station Today
Photo By Roy InmanÂŠ
Union Station Kansas City, Inc.
30 W. Pershing Rd. Suite 400, Kansas City, MO 64108 | p: 816.460.2000 | f: 816.460.2260 | unionstation.org
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