The last railroad depot in Moline is slated to be demolished. The 112-year-old Davenport, Rock Island & Northwestern depot stands where a ramp to the new I-74 bridge is going to be located, so the building has to go. The Moline City Council has decided to proceed with demolition, rather than a plan to move the structure to the Moline campus of Western Illinois University.
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It should be moved, says Barbara Sandberg, chairman of the Moline Historic Preservation Commission. “It’s a one-story brick [building] with a tile roof. It has a very interesting front parapet with a clock on it, all in very good condition. According to the movers, they could have moved it,” she said. IDOT will pay up to $1 million to move the depot, but the City of Moline must contribute $154,000. Sandberg says the city should use the $140,000 that IDOT is paying for the land itself to cover most of the local cost, but the council voted 5-2 on Tuesday in favor of demolition.
Moline once had four depots. This one was built in 1900, became the office for a foundry in 1934, and has been the city’s tourism welcome center since 1993. It is a local historic landmark, and was once listed on the Landmark Illinois 10 most endangered historic places.