The history of railroad stations can be traced back to its early days, where passengers would get off at a designated area next to the tracks. They were situated alongside railways because they offered shelter from inclement weather and thieves who might prey on travelers along isolated stretches of track. Early American train stations did not have a separate room for selling tickets or waiting rooms with chairs like we see today; instead, there was a small office with one bench out front which often doubled as sleeping accommodations for overnight trips between major cities. In some cases, these buildings also served as freight depots until larger ones could be built further down the line.
Concrete company played an important role in constructing these beautiful buildings. Many concrete companies produced products specifically for railway stations such as ornamental concrete finishes, pavers, and tiles. Railways were one of the earliest adopters of concrete paving and it quickly became the standard material for track beds due to its durability and resistance to wear and tear. Concrete was also often used for station foundations, walls, and roofs because it could be made to look like stone at a fraction of the cost.
As train travel became more popular, so did the need for larger and more elaborate stations. Notable examples include Grand Central Terminal in New York City which was built in 1913 and Union Station in Washington D.C., completed in 1908. Both of these landmarks were designed by well-known architects and feature beautiful Beaux-Arts architecture with grandiose waiting rooms, marble floors, and soaring ceilings. Many railroad stations also served as important civic buildings, housing city halls or post offices on their upper levels.
With the rise of passenger airlines and automobiles in the mid-20th century, railroads began to decline in popularity. This led to a decrease in ticket sales which resulted in many station closures across the country. Today there are only a handful of active railroad stations left in the United States, most of which are located in major metropolitan areas. However, there has been a recent resurgence in interest in train travel and many new stations are being built or renovated across the country.