The CP station at Glacier was built in 1916. It is located at the western end of the Connaught Tunnel in Glacier National Park. This photo was taken in mid-June, 2021. (Contributed)

The CP station at Glacier was built in 1916. It is located at the western end of the Connaught Tunnel in Glacier National Park. This photo was taken in mid-June, 2021. (Contributed)

LETTER: Historic but not preserved

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A great example of heritage railway station preservation in action – or should we say inaction?

The CPR has no use for the Glacier railway station, and thus there is no incentive for them to have even tarped the roof a few years ago to prevent rainwater from entering the center of the structure. They have at least made the recent investments seen in the photo to prevent its collapse onto their mainline.

A photo of the station before. (Canada’s Historic Places-John L. Nicholls, 1992)

Parks Canada is the local designate for the application of the Canadian Heritage Railway Station Act, which merely designates a building to prevent unhistoric alterations but no funding for preservation. Did Parks Canada take any action even to encourage the CPR to look after one of the very few historic structures in the park, or offer to invest in preservation?

Just a short few years ago this station could have been saved for the price of a roof tarp.

Years before that, as I recall, Three Valley Gap’s deceased owner Gordon Bell asked CPR and Parks to relocate the station to join the extensive railway collection on his property. I seem to recall that it was Parks Canada that objected to the removal of ‘one of the few historic structures’ from the Park. Well they won’t have much longer to wait before this one is disposed of by the CPR as a safety hazard – at no cost to the taxpayer.

At least it’s sister log-construction stations at Windermere and Lake Louise were considered worthy of preservation, and there’s a nice little model of Glacier Station at the Revelstoke Railway Museum.

-Ken A. Jones, Alberta

Railway enthusiast


 

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