Eve Bachrach discusses the new direction outlined in a project update released this week by the team developing the Master Plan for the historic train hub. "The planners have concluded, quite sensibly, that there will have to be some compromises and tradeoffs in the decisions ahead of them--for one thing, top priority in the plan will go to making the station work as a transit hub, rather than to the development of the land around Union Station," she explains. "This reverses the priorities of the station's previous owners, and explains some of the site's current user unfriendliness."
"The report lists a loooong list of challenges facing planners, from Union Station's distance from many of Downtown's attractions and its poor connections to the surrounding site, to the mishmash of incremental changes the station has seen through the years. So instead of bringing mixed-use development to the area, the focuses of the coming plan will be: improving the passenger experience, making Union Station a destination for visitors and not just a place to pass through, and better connecting the site to its surroundings."