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Northern Pacific / Burlington Northern Santa Fe Train Depot

By | Last Modified: November 10, 2017
Fiesta Villa Mexican Restaurant / Former Northern Pacific Railroad Depot

Bismarck’s historic train depot was completed in 1901 at a cost of $33,601 – a replacement for the original depot, which was destroyed in the 1898 Fire. The building has undergone several additions and alterations throughout its existence, particularly in 1930 and 1954-1955.

Design

Unique to the region, the depot sports Spanish Mission Revival architecture, designed by the St. Paul firm of Charles Reed and Alan Stem. Also noteworthy, it was one of the first local structures with concrete structural walls.

Building Use

Several entities have utilized the depot for train service, most notably Northern Pacific Railroad and Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF).

The facility ceased operation as a train depot in 1975. By 1977, the building was remodeled to house the Mexican-themed restaurant Fiesta Villa, who remained on the site until its closure in 2016.

In 2017, local entrepreneur, Dale Zimmerman, formerly unveiled plans to transition the former depot into a microbrewery, restaurant, and event center.

Depot Park

For much of its early existence, the north side of the depot was home to Depot Park – one of Bismarck’s first parks. The area was eventually converted into parking. There have been recent efforts to convert this area back into a public venue called Depot Plaza.

Prior Land Use

Prior to the depot’s construction, the site was formerly home to Sheridan House, which was forced to relocate across the street to clear space for the new depot.

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