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Business Use of Retired Railway Equipment and Stations

Railways often leased or sold unused stations with some being moved off railway property and others in situ. In many cases especially on abandoned lines these stations became residences. In other cases businesses took them over sometimes with addition of retired passenger train rolling stock. In still other cases only rolling stock, mostly passenger cars were used by themselves. The most common non-residential use was for restaurants although almost entirely independently owned as opposed to franchised locations. These are particularly risky with a high failure rate.

One exception to the latter was McDonald's which had a caboose at many locations for children's birthday parties. These were wooden, many fell into disuse and were scrapped.

One large restaurant chain based out of San Francisco with 100 locations in US and Canada was Victoria Station with locations at 190 Queens Quay East on the Toronto waterfront (long before the area became filled with high rise condos!),
and in Montreal. These all utilized new construction with a caboose for entrance and five box cars. These 1970's steakhouses were all decorated with British Railway artifacts. The chain went into decline and finally went bankrupt in 1986.

Other uses for cabooses included tourist information booths, B&B's etc. Many became private cottages or guest houses.

Non-business uses include railway museums, displays at heritage villages, public displays in parks, private uses including collections not open to the public. There are thousands of pieces of motive power and rolling stock all across Canada plus, tourist railways that both operate and display equipment. Sadly, a lot of this equipment in various catagories is neglected or poorly maintained often winding up being scrapped. In fact, decades ago the poor condition of cabooses still bearing the corporate identity of the donor caused the president of the CPR to prohibit any further donations.

We will have a look at some here. Former stations have also been used, mostly as restaurants.

If you have any photos of these sorts of places both business and private, stations or cars, Please CONTACT US.

A&W "CNR 9" Maybe "Engine, engine number 9" of children's song fame.
Definately not the Roger Miller song version because it was diesel!
Can't see the builder's plate but this 0-4-0 is made of wood!

Little people like it! This is at 333 Gregg Avenue on the Yellowhead Highway in Hinton.

CN 78881 is now The Loose Caboose a fast food place now open 365 days a year.
35 Marlborough Street North, Cornwall, ON. 7/21/2014 John Mayell

Food Cabooses Gallery

Tourist Information Booths

Rolling stock_ Other non-business uses
including; Tourist railways, Museums,
Private collections, Private ownership, etc.

Reused stations for residences, restaurants, other business etc.

CPR Ontario District

CPR Algoma District NEW

CPR New Brunswick District

Various railways (alphabetical order)

Annapolis Royal Train Station
DAR Annapolis Royal, NS NEW

Broken Rail Brewing
GTR St.Marys Jct. ON
(GTW caboose) NEW 2021

Clearview Station Bed and Breakfast
Creemore, ON
(ONR caboose)

Cranberry Golf Course NEW 2021
Collingwood, ON
GTR 1898 Stayner station

Footloose Caboose Lodge
Kingman, AB (near Tofield)
(CPR dining car)

Historic Train Station
GTR Wiarton, ON NEW
(no rolling stock)

Island Stone Pub-Kensington Station NEWEST 2022
CNR Kensington PEI
(no rolling stock)

Le Railcar Restaurant NEW 2021.
"Gastown" Vancouver, BC
(CPR BC 8)

Mudtown Station
CPR Owen Sound, ON NEW
(no rolling stock)

Musquodoboit Harbour Railway Museum
and Nova Scotia Tourist Bureau

CGR Musquodoboit, NS

Ossawippi Express Dining Cars
(several passenger cars)
CPR Orillia, ON

Premium Lunch
Ex CNER TSR station
(no rolling stock)

Prestige Rocky Mountain Resort NEW
Sleeping car Naughton
Cranbrook, BC

Puddicombe Estate Farms and Winery
includes B&B caboose, station and
2 foot gauge train ride.
Winona, ON

Rails End Gallery and Arts Centre
GTR station, tourist info caboose,
CNR 2616 2-8-0 on display.
Haliburton, ON

Resto Gare NEW
Bistro and train bar.
CNoR station also Dining Car
St. Boniface, MB

Saskatoon Station Place
CPR station
Saskatoon, SK NEWEST 2022

Station Gallery NEW
GTR Whitby, ON

Stirling Rotary Club NEW
Antiques and Collectibles
Ex CNR/GTR station Stirling, ON

Tatamagouche Train Station Inn
Ex ICR station, several vans, psgr cars.
Tatamagouche, NS

The Depot
Ex CNR station
(no rolling stock)
Craigleith, ON

The Island Stone Pub
See Island Stone Pub-Kensington Station

The Keg at the Station NEW 2021
Ex CPR station
(no rolling stock)
New Westminister, BC

The Old Spaghetti Factory
Gastown, Vancouver, BC

The Old Spaghetti Factory NEWEST 2022
CPR station. Saskatoon, SK

The Smokin' Buddha
Ex CNR/NS&T station
Port Colborne, ON

Tuscan Club
Leaside, Toronto, ON
(CPR BC & coach)

Vegreville Train Station
Restaurant Ex CNR
(CN van nearby)
Vegreville, AB

Village Depot
Ex CNR & GWR stns
Grimsby, ON new
(2 stns. and rolling stock)


Canadian Grain Elevator Discovery Center
Big Sky Garden Railway
Nanton, AB





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