Opened on May 15, 1912, by the Tampa Union Station Company, its original purpose was to combine passenger operations for the Atlantic Coast Line, the Seaboard Air Line and the Tampa Northern Railroad at a single site. On June 5, 1974, it was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. After its condition deteriorated substantially, Tampa Union Station was closed in 1984; Amtrak passengers used a temporary prefabricated station building located adjacent to the station platforms after the building was closed.
Tampa Union Station was acquired in 1991 by the non-profit Tampa Union Station Preservation & Redevelopment Corporation (TUSP&R) via a mortgage held by CSX, the freight railroad company which was the corporate descendant of its original railroad owners. TUSP&R raised over 4 million USD for the building's restoration through grants and loans from sources including the Florida Department of Transportation (ISTEA funds), the City of Tampa (grant funds) and the National Trust for Historic Preservation (no interest loan). At the completion of the restoration in 1998, the station reopened to Amtrak passengers and the public. CSX donated the station to the City of Tampa that same year.
During the course of the restoration, numerous abandoned documents from the Pullman Company, Tampa Union Station Company, and the Seaboard Air Line Railroad were discovered in the station. TUSP&R volunteers sorted these documents and preserved them by archiving them at the University of South Florida Library Special Collections Department and (in the case of the Pullman Company materials), the Newberry Library in Chicago.
The City of Tampa's Real Estate Division manages Tampa Union Station for the City. The Division has leased portions of the facility to private tenants, including a second floor office once occupied by the Pullman Company, and the former baggage building (which houses an art gallery).
In September 2008, a permanent endowment for the care and upkeep of Tampa Union Station was established at the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay by a group of private donors. Income from the endowment goes to the City of Tampa to assist with the maintenance of the facility.
Currently, Tampa Union Station operates as an Amtrak station for the Silver Star line. It also provides Amtrak Thruway Motorcoach services to Orlando, Lakeland, Pinellas Park-St. Petersburg, Bradenton, Sarasota, Port Charlotte and Fort Myers.
- McQuigg, Jackson. Tampa Union Station. Dover, NH: Arcadia Publishing, 1998.
- Florida's Office of Cultural and Historical Programs
- Union Train Station(TampaPix.com)
- TampaGov: Tampa Union Station
- USF Library Special Collections
- Newberry Library
- Community Foundation of Tampa Bay