The Ultimate Big Kid Toy

Loved trains as a kid? Always wanted to run your own train station? Got $150,000? NJ Transit is selling the Benson Street station in Glen Ridge. The minimum bid is $150,000, but the station needs work and must be restored historically. More here from the Star Ledger.

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  1. Lovely building. I wish I had $150k burning a hole in my pocket.
    Anyone recall when the fire was? I don’t remember that.

  2. I think that James Wilson, a RR buff, used to run this location. There were old photographs, benches, a pot-bellied stove radiating heat in the winter, coffee and Stella Dora breakfast cookies for 50 cents and a loo.

  3. MellonBrush, yes, Jim Wilson ran the Railway Museum that was inside the buiding.
    “Jim Wilson — a boyhood train aficionado who grew up to be a conductor and then the owner of a small Passaic railway with five engines, 1.8 miles of track and a Pullman “club car” — once had a lease on the station.
    There, he maintained a small museum and served coffee to commuters before the NJ Transit line was idled in 2002 and a fire left the station badly damaged. Glen Ridge had tried unsuccessfully to secure a grant to help Wilson reclaim it.
    His lease was terminated more than a year ago, NJ Transit has said.”
    Carl Bergmanson was applying for grants but nothing was fruitful. I do hope that they can salvage something of the original design. I don’t think that the picture above really depicts how derelict the station is currently. I walk by the place daily and there’s a fence to keep out the ne’er-do-wells.

  4. And finally, I can post this in its proper place:
    I posted this earlier today on another thread:
    Tangentially speaking, today’s Ledger had an article about the Bensen Street train station and there was a mention of Glen Ridge township attorney Alan Trembulak. Is that the doppelganger of Montclair’s attorney? I’ll have two scoops please.

  5. Hmm 150k is far less than houses around the area. Hopefully that feline station agent in Japan doesn’t outbid me.

  6. I think NJT is off the hook! They should just give the station to Glen Ridge at this point! They’re asking 150K plus how much more to renno?It Looks like a teardown to me. Let someone get it for the land, salvage as much as possible and put up a McStation. As a somewhat longtime GRer and history buff this has been painful to look at year after year.

  7. I love that little station. My nephew just loves trains. Wish I’d bought a lotter ticket tonight.

  8. So it’s a burned up station that is uninhabitable, they want $150K for it, but you can’t tear it down, you can’t put a restaurant in it (which could benefit from the history), and it’s only 1.5 stories high/ 1.5k square feet. Who the heck is going to buy that?

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