Contact Us | About the Society | Membership | Sitemap   

  CPR Red Deer station and park 1912 - RD Archives

Forth Junction Project
Railway Stations of
Central Alberta

Forth Junction Project Vision Sharing Historical Perspective Ground Transportation
Heritage Preservation
Forth Junction
Heritage Society

Railways of Central Alberta

Railway Stations

Rail Bridges & Structures

Trains, Transit & Trails

Central Alberta Overview

C&ER Combination Stations

Historic Red Deer 1910 CPR 'Jewel'

4 Stations of Red Deer

Central Alberta CPR Station Styles

Central Alberta CNR Station Styles

Portable Stations

Multiple Station Communities

Railway stations were once the
focal point of Western Canadian communities
(updated March 2022)

Photo descriptions and credits at bottom of page.
Red Deer CPR station streetside 1987 - Pettypiece photoThe railway station was the gateway and heart of most Western Canadian communities for at least 60 years. For immigrants, settlers, visitors, merchants, manufacturers and farmers, the railway station was the focal point of the community. Mail, news, communication and goods were exchanged there.
CPR Alix station 1910 - Glenbow Archives via Peels postcards
Although Canadian Pacific experienced a virtual monopoly on rail service for 25 years, two other major railways provided competition until the two were amalgamated after ten years of intense railway expansion.

Although each community has unique characteristics as does the region as a whole, in many ways Central Alberta represents the settlement, development and character of Western Canada.

The Railway Stations of Central Alberta by railway and subdivision
A look at five stations in Central Alberta that are unique and have special significance as well as the various railway station styles and plans in Central Alberta listed by CPR or CNR subdivisions including:
Lacombe CPR station 1916 - CP Archives
- Canadian Pacific Railway (formerly Calgary & Edmonton Railway) Red Deer
   subdivision (Calgary to Red Deer) and Leduc subdivision (Red Deer to Edmonton),
- CPR Alberta Central subdivision (formerly Alberta Central Railway Red Deer to Rocky
   Mountain House now abandoned),
- CPR Lacombe subdivision (Lacombe to Stettler),
- CPR Wetaskiwin subdivision (Wetaskiwin east partial),
- CPR Hoadley subdivision (formerly Lacombe and Blindman Valley Electric Railway and
   Lacombe and Northwestern Railway from Lacombe to Rimbey),
- CPR Acme subdivision (Acme to Wimborne abandoned),
- CPR Langdon subdivision (Calgary to Acme partial),
- Canadian National Railway Brazeau subdivision currently operating Mirror to Red Deer and Rocky Mountain House (formerly Canadian
   Northern Western Railway Mirror to Nordegg),
- CNR Three Hills subdivision (formerly Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Mirror to Calgary partial),
- CNR Stettler subdivision (formerly Alberta Midland Railway a subsidiary of Canadian Northern Railway Camrose to near Drumheller
   abandoned, a portion operated by Alberta Prairie Railway)

Mackenzie and Mann influenced Central Alberta's first railway stations -
 - A Comprehensive Guide to the Calgary & Edmonton Railway Combination Stations
Innisfail CPR (C&ER) station 1890s - Glenbow ArchivesThe first railway stations built between Calgary and Edmonton in 1891 were a standard combination station that only took a few weeks to build. Although none have survived, many were in service either as stations or freight sheds well into the 1950s while others were replaced by larger facilities. The original stations were built at Airdrie, Carstairs, Olds, Innisfail, Red Deer, Lacombe, Ponoka, Wetaskiwin, Leduc and Strathcona (South Edmonton) as well as a few communities south of Calgary. All but the ones at Olds, Innisfail and Ponoka were replaced by larger stations. Photos and renderings accompany the article.
preserved historic CPR Red Deer station 2007 - Pettypiece
Red Deer 1910 CPR station 'jewel' still dominates Ross Street
The 1891 C&ER combination station at Red Deer was replaced by a unique chateau-style station similar to one in Lethbridge in 1910. It served the railway until the relocation of the downtown rail yards in 1990. Scheduled for demolition, the historic station was designated a federal, provincial and municipal historic resource and saved resulting in the Ross Street extension being rerouted around the structure which was renovated in 1996 to continue to dominates Ross Street as offices. The former 1891 station was relocated, extended and used as a freight house until the mid-1960s. Photos and renderings accompany the article.
CNR station Red Deer 1955 - Red Deer Archives
Red Deer once had four railway stations
When one thinks of railway stations in Red Deer, the CPR brick chateau-style station at the head of Ross Street is the only one that usually comes to mind. But Red Deer had four stations over time including the original 1891 C&ER combination station. There was also a Canadian National Railways station a few blocks away between 1923 and 1960. And, for a short time in 1911, an Alberta Central Railway station stood in south Red Deer. That station was relocated a few times and used as a residence until this day. Photos and renderings accompany the article.

Red Deer CPR new and old stations 1911 - Red Deer ArchivesCanadian Pacific Railway Stations in Central Alberta
    - by style/plan
Several station styles were built or evolved in the Central Alberta region from the 1890s to the 1960s including portable and temporary stations, the original Calgary and Edmonton Railway combination stations, new stations of the 1900s and replacement stations as a result of upgrades or fires. Some stations were unique including the 1910 Red Deer CPR station. This section explores the various styles and in which communities they were built.
Sylvan Lake CNR station c1940 - SL Archives
Canadian National Railway Stations in Central Alberta
    - by style/plan

About 20 years after Canadian Pacific was building stations, new railways, including the Canadian Northern and the Grand Trunk Pacific which later became the Canadian National Railways, went on to building many stations to complement their new lines within the region. Some stations were unique including the 1923 Red Deer CNR station. This section explores the various styles and in which communities they were built.

Most communities once had portable stations for a time

Multiple Station Communities
Some communities in Central Alberta had railway stations for more than one railway. Those communities included Red Deer, Sylvan Lake, Eckville, Stettler, Camrose and Alix. The station at Rocky Mountain House was shared by two railroads.

Railway Station Architecture as a Heritage and Tourism Theme

Photo descriptions and credits:
Header: Red Deer CPR 1910 station, park and C&ER 1891 combination station as freight house 1911
     (Red Deer Archives P3202);
Red Deer CPR 1910 station streetside (Paul Pettypiece 1987);
Alix CPR 1910 standard #5 station (Glenbow Archives via Peels Prairie Postcards 1910);
Lacombe CPR 1911 woodframe station (CP Archives 1916);
Innisfail Calgary & Edmonton Railway 1891 station 1890s (Glenbow Archives NA-1709-71);
Red Deer CPR 1910 station streetside (Paul Pettypiece 2007);
Red Deer CNR 1923 station 1955 (Red Deer Archives P7009);
Red Deer CPR 1910 station, park and C&ER 1891 combination station as freight house 1911
     (Red Deer Archives P3202);
Sylvan Lake CNoR 1913 3rd class station c1940 (Sylvan Lake Archives)

Photos courtesy of Red Deer Archives, Glenbow Archives, Canadian Pacific Archives, Sylvan Lake Archives and Paul Pettypiece.


Railway Stations of the Region
C & ER Combination Stations
Portable Stations
Red Deer CPR 1910 Station
Role of Railway Stations
Red Deer's 4 Stations
CPR Stations in Central Alberta
CNR Stations in Central Alberta
Multiple Station Communities
Station Plans

The Railways of Central Alberta
Calgary & Edmonton Railway
C & E Railway at Red Deer
Alberta Central Railway
Canadian Northern Railway
Canadian Northern Western RR
Canadian National Railway in RD
Grand Trunk Pacific Central Alberta
Lacombe & Blindman Valley RR
Timetable Excerpts
Trails, Transit, Trains
Trails and Trains Overview
Trains and Transit Overview

Milestones 1910-13
Calgary Edmonton Trail
Transit in Central Alberta
Red Deer Transit

Jubilee 3001 Chinook
Locomotives Central Alberta
Rise and Fall of Passenger Rail


Bridges, Structures, Heritage
Rail Structures of Region
Central Alberta Rail Bridges

Mintlaw Trestle
Alberta's Railway Bridges
Western Canada Rail Bridges



Home | Why Forth Junction? | FAQ | Media News
 Collections Policy | Bibliography | Copyright, Terms of Use, Privacy Policy

website developed by Forth Junction Heritage Society.
Copyright 2009-2022  All Rights Reserved.