Torn-Down Tuesday: The Lehigh Train Terminal, 1959

By Steve Cichon
steve@buffalostories.com
@stevebuffalo

When the new Lehigh Valley passenger terminal opened in 1916, it was “a cause for civic celebration,” and “the dreams of years fulfilled.” Its erection gave Buffalo the passenger terminal that for a generation people had been wishing and hoping to see built.

Postcard image, Buffalo Stories archives

Called “the most portentous” passenger terminal in “this section of the country,” the four-story structure was built of gray Indiana limestone.

Buffalo News archives

By 1959, rail passenger service was becoming a thing of the past in Buffalo. In fact, many of the Lehigh Valley right-of-ways were sold to New York State to build the I-190. The mammoth structure had become unnecessary, and had been allowed to fall into disrepair.

Buffalo News archives

The station was demolished in 1960 to make way for the Donovan State Office Building, which was refurbished and is now the home of Phillips Lytle, Courtyard by Marriott and Pizza Plant.

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Steve Cichon

Steve Cichon is a proud Buffalonian helping the world experience the city he loves. writing about the people, places, and ideas that make Buffalo unique and special. The storyteller and historian has written six books, worn bow ties since the 80s, and spent 20 years working in Buffalo radio and TV, climbing his way to news director at WBEN Radio. Since then, he's been an adjunct professor, produced PBS documentaries, and even run for Erie County Clerk. Steve's Buffalo roots run deep: all eight of his great-grandparents called Buffalo home, with his first ancestors arriving here in 1827.