Check Out these Mad Men-esque Stations

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Ever wonder why the Lawrence and Topeka stations in Kansas look so similar?

After World War II, the Santa Fe Railway wanted to don a new look, so they reinvested in a few of its stations, including Lawrence and Topeka, by adorning them in a Mid-Century Modern style.

Picture the architecture you see in Mad Men, and you’ll get the idea: loads of bricks, walls made out of glass, terrazzo floors, and open, airy rooms with flat roofs.

Lawrence-based architects (both named Warren!), Warren Jones and Warren Corman, designed their town’s station to match the Mid-Century Modern trend, and opened it up in 1956. The Depot Redux, a group that volunteers to restore this Amtrak station, lead regular clean-up days at the depot.

Similarly, at the Burlington, Iowa station, which also rocks the Mid-Century Modern look, a “Friends of the Depot” group is always painting and fixing the windows to help the city maintain the structure – and greeting its two trains each day!

Also nailing the Mid-Century Modern architecture like the Lawrence station, the Topeka depot was built with off-white stones cut into squares, terrazzo floors, and sunken ceiling lights. It opened in 1950-well before the Mad Men debut in 2007.

Have you seen these stations in person? Tell us about your experience in the comments below!


Happy to report the City of Lawrence just voted unanimously to officially take over ownership of our stellar mid-century modern Lawrence Depot from BNSF. That means a MAJOR restoration and renovation, placement on the National Historic Register, a trailhead, parking, and amenities for our Lawrence Loop 22-mile urban trail system, and a great downtown attraction that will bring more tourists to Lawrence. Great job, Depot Redux'ers and City of Lawrence!!!