Baltimore: Mount Royal Station

Baltimore: Mount Royal Station

The Mount Royal Station was the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad's third train station in Baltimore, Maryland, at the north end of the Baltimore Belt Line's Howard Street tunnel in the fashionable Bolton Hill neighborhood. It was the first railroad station in the world to have electrified passenger trains when it opened on September 1, 1896, serving the B&O's famed Royal Blue line. Following its closure as a railroad station in 1961, it became part of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in an acclaimed adaptation preserving the building's original architectural features. The building is now used for MICA art studios.

Designed by Baltimore architect E. Francis Baldwin in a blend of modified Romanesque and Renaissance styling, the station was constructed in 1896 by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) as part of its massive Baltimore Belt Line improvement project for its New York passenger service. Located at the north end of the B&O's Howard Street tunnel, the station was built of Maryland granite trimmed with Indiana limestone, with a red tile roof and landmark 150-foot clocktower. The station's interior featured marble mosaic flooring, a fireplace, and rocking chairs. It opened to the public on September 1, 1896. "It was considered," said the Baltimore Sun, "the most splendid station in the country built and used by only one railroad."

On June 30, 1961, the B&O consolidated its Baltimore passenger train service at Camden Station, permanently ending its use of Mount Royal Station after 65 years of operation.

The vacant railroad station building, train shed, and the surrounding 3¼ acres were subsequently acquired by the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in 1964 for $250,000. The Station Building, as it is now called by MICA, houses the undergraduate departments of fiber and interdisciplinary sculpture, 3-D classrooms, and the Rinehart School of Sculpture, as well as senior studios.

The above text is from the Wikipedia article on Mount Royal Station

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