Union Station was built in 1914 in an historic section of the City of Utica referred to as Bagg's Square. The station is located in a NY State Economic Development Zone and is listed on both the State and National Registers of Historic Places.
Title to Union Station is now held by Oneida County. In 1978 the County undertook a major restoration of the station at a cost of $1,374,000. The County recently completed a major asbestos abatement project at the station. Further the Governmental Policy & Liaison Committee (GP&L) and NYSDOT concurred with the addition of Genesee Street from the State Thruway to the proposed National Highway System (NHS) in as much as the station is a regional intermodal transportation center.
As an intermodel center the station serves AMTRAK, intercity and city bus passengers, and taxis. Currently the following bus companies utilize the station: Greyhound, Birnie Bus Services Inc., Utica-Rome Bus Company, Adirondack Trailways, Chenango Valley Bus Co., and Utica Transit Authority.
Union Station redevelopment efforts have focused on maintaining and enhancing the station's multimodal transportation function. Work has already progressed through the implementation of two phases. Phase I, which was designed and constructed through the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) and is now nearly completed, consists of: improved road access, landscaping, lighting, drainage and parking improvement totaling $2.2 million ($1.5 FHWA). Phase II is nearing completion at an estimated cost of $2.4 million ($1.900 STP-transfer to FTA), consists of new roof, new electric and water service, public restroom renovations, clock repair, ground level walkway to Track #2, renovation of office space on the 2nd and 3rd floors.
The Phase III scheduled for 2000 focuses on redevelopment of the station and adjacent REA (former Railway Express Agency) building. Phase III has been divided into four parts, including: overhead walkway completion, refurbishing canopies, REA building repairs, and station/lobby historical preservation. Funding for the Phase III portion of the station totals about $5.25 million ($4.2 million FTA).
The project includes an overhead walkway from the station's second story over a portion of the existing walkway with a bridge to a new north side platform. The north side tower will contain stairway and a handicap accessible elevator. Bridge work will also include a new staircase on the south side of the tracks serving the Amtrak walkway as well as the station.
Phase III also includes refurbishing all the existing canopies. The REA structure will receive facade and exterior structural canopy support repairs. The platform improvements will serve Amtrak and Adirondack Scenic Railroad passengers.
Interior lobby historical preservation work will include replacement and reconstruction of all existing wood and glass storefront units back to fully functional and to original condition. Various floor locations will be replaced with stone flooring to match the original. Interior plumbing will be modified to separate roof drainage system from building sanitary sewer piping. Modern information signs will be replaced with period type signs. Also, the exterior station brick and stone, grates, balconies, etc. will be cleaned.
A proposed Phase IV would continue to address the needs of Union Station including; air-conditioning, sewer, plumbing, heating, safety/security, parking, public address and other structural and historic preservation needs. The total estimated cost for Phase IV is $4.0 million with proposed funding from FTA, NYSDOT, and county.