Engine 209 Park

Located at 878 Grove St, Gainesville, GA 30501, Engine 209 Park is a small train park in Gainesville, Georgia. The park features a locomotive, a red caboose, and other public art. It also includes a playground, benches, and area lighting. The park is open Monday through Sunday. Eventually, Engine 209 Park hopes to attract more people.

The park is a part of a $2 million renovation project. It began in August. It is located on the original line of the Gainesville Midland Railroad. The locomotive was originally built for a czar of Russia, and was named Engine 209. The last steam locomotive in Gainesville ran on September 19, 1959. However, the Russian Revolution of 1917 prevented the engine from being delivered. The city decided to preserve the locomotive for the public. The Gainesville Parks Department was responsible for the project. The city’s TSPLOST fund helped cover the cost. Next location

Engine 209 was originally displayed on the grounds of the old train switching yard in Gainesville. However, the city decided to move the park to a more accessible location. The historical park featured benches and gardens.

The park also featured a large “Love Freedom” mural, which depicted a child flying on a hawk. Engine 209 Park also includes a playground and picnic tables. A boardwalk over a detention pond also exists. There is also a circuit training fitness court, which doubles as a public art installation. The park also features area lighting and swings.

The Gainesville Redevelopment Authority owns the 1.7-acre tract where Engine 209 is currently displayed. The city hopes to sell this tract in order to help spur downtown growth. The redevelopment authority is also looking to relocate the historic train to another city-owned property. It plans to list the locomotive baggage car online. The winning bidder will be required to include the locomotive in commercial development.

While some residents and activists are upset about the move, the city hopes to attract more visitors with a larger event. The Gainesville Parks Department hopes to gain more coverage and increase social media engagement. The Midland Greenway plan does not include the new B Entertainment venue that is planned for the site. However, the plan is still in the works. It has been three years in the making. The trail starts at a white pedestrian bridge that spans Jesse Jewell Parkway. The trail features early 20th century architecture and runs along the riverfront. The trail ends at Engine 209 Park. More information

Engine 209 Park is located on the original Gainesville Midland Railroad line. It is a part of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce’s Adopt-A-Park program. The railroad company began transporting mail in 1906. After the company reformed in 1936, it continued to run the line. The Gainesville Midland Railroad also operated seven steam locomotives. Most of the locomotives have been preserved in museums. There are six preserved in North Carolina.

The city has also listed the locomotive baggage car for auction. The winning bidder will not be able to move it far. However, the city has plans to sell the 1.7-acre tract to help spur growth in the downtown area.

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