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Visions For Vacancies: Stoughton's Train Station

What would you like to see done with the Stoughton Train Station? Should the town purchase it?

Drive around Stoughton and you'll notice a number of empty storefronts and buildings.

We're starting a new series titled "Visions for Vacancies." We'll showcase an empty storefront and ask you what should take up the space.

It makes sense to start with the vacancy that has made headlines recently - the historic .

The , until Stoughton's state house delegation - Senator Brian A. Joyce and Representatives Louis Kafka and William Galvin , giving the town a chance to work out a deal for the property.

The station was built in 1888 (it's on the ) and was renovated in 1988 at the cost of $1 million, thanks to funding from a foundation.

It's considered a key piece in the downtown puzzle. But once acquired, it will require a substantial amount of money to make the building usable again.

The MBTA is said to want $350,000 for the property, which also includes 30 parking spaces. Stoughton would like to acquire it for much less than that.

What would you like to see done with the Stoughton Train Station? Should the town purchase it?

Take our poll and let us know your specific ideas in the comments section.

An oldtimer July 19, 2012 at 08:16 PM
If it's not A TRAIN STATION, where will the commuters park??
Pam July 20, 2012 at 02:03 AM
Buy it!! It's one of the only beautiful and unique things in our downtown. Future use possibilities are endless and could springboard interest in revitalizing the area. Restaurant/bar? Indoor farmers / crafters market? Coffee shop / wifi cafe? Losing this building would be one more step towards total desolation and bleak landscape in that area. Keeping it could be the start of a positive change.
LJB July 20, 2012 at 03:49 AM
I would love to see a combination cafe and workign train station/waiting area. The town of Stoughton could lease it out to appropriate businesses so we ensure that it retains its character.
Brenda McGivern July 20, 2012 at 03:11 PM
A small cafe with excellent take out would be great! I say buy it and keep it a historical site with a cafe operating in it.
Sarah July 20, 2012 at 08:59 PM
Take a look at other successfully renovated small town train stations. West Concord's train station is an excellent example. It was renovated, saving its historic integrety and importance. Inside the depot is a nice little breakfast/lunch cafe (The Club Car) that offers good, affordable food for commuters and town's people alike They also sell newspapers, so that people can grab one on their way to work. Commuters are welcome to wait inside during bad weather and there is wifi for those who want to sit and get some work done while enjoying their food or coffee. The historic renovation won a state award a few years ago. Stoughton officials should go for a visit and meet with the many town foundations who were involved in the renovations.
Sarah July 20, 2012 at 09:02 PM
Also, I did not vote in the poll, because I would choose more than one option. I think having a functioning train waiting area is important, but in addition to that I feel that a functioning business/restaurant/store is important as well, to help offset the cost of the building and bring life to downtown.
Sarah July 20, 2012 at 09:06 PM
And old timer- clearly the parking lot needs to be kept for commuters. But, that does not mean that a store/restaurant cannot be housed there as well!
An oldtimer July 20, 2012 at 09:15 PM
Sarah, after reading the article in the Stoughton Journal, I have changed my mind. There are 30 spaces by wyman st. that go with the station. I casual lunch & dinner is what the town needs, on the lines of the 99 and the Texas Roadhouse. would need to be another franchise,the 99 and the Roadhouse are to close.
Jeffrey Pickette (Editor) July 20, 2012 at 09:24 PM
This article (and previous ones on the site) also mention the 30 spaces :)
Laura July 20, 2012 at 11:22 PM
I agree with Sarah - a functioning train station with a restaurant/cafe or other type of commercial use. Not too many years ago (less than 10-15 years ago), I remember it was still being used as a train station, with a small coffee concession, and a little booth where one of the local non-profits sold knick-knacks. A nicer, better-maintained version of that would be great!
Longtime Resident July 21, 2012 at 12:33 AM
I would love to turn it into a residence - the rent on 30 parking spaces would pay the mortgage - lol. Seriously, it would be very nice to see some type of small bakery/cafe for breakfast/lunch combined with a small waiting area as it had in the past. The town could buy it, then lease out the space.
Carolyn Curtis-Mahoney July 21, 2012 at 03:08 AM
If we'd like to revitalize Stoughton Center, we need to attract families with young children to the Center. The train station could be reinvented as a free or low-cost gathering place similar to the Children's Museum in Easton, but on a smaller scale. Low-tech "attractions" like a wooden train table, a sand table, a playhouse, a book nook, and so on would provide a friendly place for families to meet, no matter what the weather. Families who gather at the playspace would also explore the Center and support the businesses. Children who are introduced to Stoughton Center at a young age, and who grow up with happy memories of the Center, may grow up to become good caretakers of our town.
Kristin Colp-Khang July 21, 2012 at 10:42 AM
I really hope that the town purchases this property. It's been so sad to see so many empty buildings and a little cafe/waiting area would be great!
Cory Cai September 04, 2012 at 05:36 PM
Buy it is a must, then re-do the whole area even if you have to take it down. that whole area is a mess with all the other abandoned buildings and piles of rubble in the middle of the road. our town square is a mess and its embarrassing they desperately need to do something and acquiring the station is a start.
Jana Szeglin August 12, 2013 at 09:57 AM
The Train station has many opportunities. If the town buys it should be restored. It can be an Art Gallery, Museum, Cafe, Education Center, a store front. One item that MUST stay would be the building itself. Since its the only Clock tower train station in MA we would have to keep it that way. This is great publicity for the town and it is a great location and has amazing potential.

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