225 3rd Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55401 USA
+1 612-375-1700

The History of the Depot


The Depot fluttered with activity during the late 1800s when Minneapolis was a rapidly growing city. At the peak of activity in 1920, the prosperous Depot was bustling with 29 trains departing daily. In 1971, the Milwaukee Road terminated rail service to Minneapolis and converted the building into office use. In 1978, the Minnesota Historical Society placed The Depot and the nearby freight house on the National Register of Historic Places.

History of the old Milwaukee Road Depot

The last train left in 1971, but The Depot still stands as a monument to romantic, adventurous rail days gone by. For nearly seven decades, family members and loved ones stood at the atrium of the Depot and waved to passengers boarding the trains of the Milwaukee Road line. A prosperous hub of business and personal travel, this was the place where ambition set forth, destinies converged, and hearts became one.

Downtown Minneapolis

1864-1899: Minnesota Central Railroad

The rail line, first built in 1864, was originally known as the Minnesota Central Railroad. In 1867 the Milwaukee and St. Paul Railroad bought the Minnesota Central Railway, changing the name of the railroad to the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railroad in 1874 before shortening the name to Milwaukee Road. The old Milwaukee Road Depot was constructed in 1899 and remains one of the last long-span, truss-roofed sheds surviving in the nation.

Renaissance Revival Style

The Depot, a Renaissance Revival style building, was designed by Charles Frost. Considered conservative in style, the ground floors were paved in white marble with black borders and walls were built with cream and brown enamel brick. The ceiling of intricately paneled oak gave the rooms a large, spacious feel. The total cost of the Depot was about $200,000.

The Club Lounge

HISTORIC. CLASSIC. TIMELESS.