Hamilton’s Train Station Requires Some Heavy Lifting…Literally

When it comes to preserving a piece of history, Hamilton is willing to go the extra mile.
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Photograph by Justin Schafer

You need to figure out a way to move an object from point a to point b. Easy enough, right? Not if the object in question is an entire 19th century train station. That was the situation for the City of Hamilton, which was forced to choose between preserving the set of buildings or letting CSX, the depot’s owner, demolish them. What’s a city to do? The answer: Pick them up—the whole combined 500-plus tons of them—and move them down the street without tearing apart the original structures.

Photograph by Justin Schafer

“The city has been interested over a number of years to preserve the buildings,” says Rich Engle, Hamilton’s director of engineering. “[But] until recently, there were no city-owned parcels available nearby to place them.” CSX and the city began negotiations in 2021 and finalized the process in January, enlisting Wolfe House & Building Movers, a company that has carefully uprooted and transported everything from Florida’s Bellevue Biltmore Hotel to the Alexander Hamilton National Memorial in New York City. Using a series of custom hydraulic dollies equipped with remote-controlled technology, the movers lifted the depot and rolled it nearly 1,000 feet to its new resting place on Maple Avenue.

Photograph by Justin Schafer

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