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Happy 70th B-Day, Union Station!

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Los Angeles' central rail transit hub is a modest 70 years old; a baby compared to many train depots in other major cities. Union Station was designed by John B. and Donald D. Parkinson, and "opened in 1939, with a dedication ceremony featuring both the mayor of Los Angeles and the governor of California, amidst three days of pageants, parades and other celebrations," according to our very own LAistory entry on the "last of the great train stations built in this country."

Before commercial air travel was de rigeur for getting from point A to point B, Union Station was where most everyone arriving or departing Los Angeles passed through. As air travel grew in popularity Union Station's use saw a decline; the use of the station, however, as a hub for both the Metro Red and Gold Lines, and Metrolink commuter trains, has brought the terminal back into heavy use. Immortalized in many films and tv shows, one wing of the grande dame of train travel is actually owned by a location company. In addition to the old ticketing concourse, part of that off-limits area was once a Fred Harvey Room, an elegant dining area staffed by attractive young women.

To celebrate Union Station's Diamond (or Platinum) Anniversary, we're offering some images from our LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr. To celebrate the occasion yourself, hop on a bus, subway, or train and enjoy the beautiful building and grounds for yourself.