Santa Fe Depot’s New Owners Discuss Plans for The Future
This iconic San Diego landmark has been under utilized for years, but the new owners have plans to change that. The 102 year old train station has not been used for much more than your run of the mill train station, but the Shah family wants to revitalize this iconic piece of San Diego’s history. The Shah family consists of a father/son team, which had previously specialized in retail strip centers and apartments. They want to breath some life into The Santa Fe Depot and even envision relighting the blue “Santa Fe” sign that was removed sometime in the past.
For now, they plan on making an estimated $2 million in repairs while considering the best use for the property. They estimate it will take all of 2018 reviewing possible plans and negotiating a new contract with Amtrak. The Shah family is excited about working on this project, which will hopefully be a legacy in San Diego’s future.
Below are some of the changes the Shahs are currently considering:
- “Santa Fe” Neon Sign: Relighting the neon “Santa Fe” sign that was initially established in the 1940’s
- Adding a Food Court: This would be located in the southern portion of the existing plaza. They envision something similar to Liberty Station’s Public Market
- Office or Boutique Hotel: Currently there is a second level to The Santa Fe Depot that isn’t being utilized. It once acted as a space that housed railroad workers overnight. They are considering turning the upstairs area into either a creative office space or boutique hotel with about 30 rooms.
- Rooftop Bar: Creating an outdoor rooftop bar or event space that could accommodate approximately 300 people.
- Restaurant: They are looking at putting in an upscale restaurant in the main waiting area under the historic chandeliers.
- Amtrak Ticketing Operation: Amtrak’s lease expires in 2021 and currently occupies the entire Santa Fe Depot. They will need to renegotiate a lease with Amtrak, which will decide how much space they will occupy.
The Shah Family hopes to have The Santa Fe Depot ready for future enjoyment by 2021!