FORT PIERRE, S.D. – (DRG News) A local business offered a donation yesterday to support a fundraiser that will return Fort Pierre’s former Train Depot to town. The depot was built in 1906 as part of the Chicago and NorthWestern Railroad system and served Fort Pierre for many years. After it was deemed surplus property, rancher Shirley Miller purchased the building and moved it to the Mud Butte area in 1964. A special committee that is part of Fort Pierre’s Verendrye Museum has been working over the past few years to return and restore the depot. Yesterday, Rich Gloe Sr. of Capital Area Refuse offered $2,000 toward the depot project. “Bring it Home Committee” Chairman Gary Grittner says Gloe’s donation is much appreciated.
Gloe says he decided to offer the donation because the project is an important one for both Fort Pierre and Pierre.
The South Dakota Department of Transportation Commission awarded a $500,000 grant to the depot project from the state’s portion of the federal gas tax in January of this year. The committee needs to gather $112,000 in matching money and at this point, Grittner says about $80,000 has been raised in cash donations and in-kind commitments. Right now, Grittner says the Federal Highway Administration is looking over various details of the project and once they approve the plans, he believes a foundation can be laid and the depot should be able to be moved back to Fort Pierre-possibly yet this year.
Grittner estimates the move between Mud Butte and Fort Pierre will take five or six days. The depot will be placed on city property-just south of Fresh Start on the west side of Highway 83. Those that would like to make a donation or offer other assistance for the depot project can contact Grittner at 223-3255.
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