On Tuesday, September 14, 2021, Leon County Commissioners approved the a bid, for $3,449,820, to Ram Construction and Development, LLC for site renovations to the historic Amtrak building.
The Board also approved an agreement with the City of Tallahassee for driveway connections for Bicycle Boulevard and Railroad Avenue, in conjunction with the Amtrak building, to offset the project cost.
In December 2018, the Board approved the sale of the Tourism building and the proceeds from the sale were budgeted for the needed renovations to the historic Amtrak building. The renovations include the permanent relocation of the Division of Tourism and Visitor Information Center to the Amtrak Building. The Amtrak building, constructed in 1858 and originally known as the Jacksonville, Pensacola, and Mobile Railroad Company Freight Depot, is currently listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The budget shortfall for the Amtrak Building Renovation and Site Reconstruction project is $384,535. Based on the bid, the city will provide $134,535 for the shared costs for the new driveway construction and existing driveway modifications. Also, an additional $250,000 is available in the Tourist Development fund balance to fund this project.
In conjunction with this project, the City of Tallahassee has a Railroad Avenue Improvement Project between Gaines Street and FAMU Way. The goals are enhancing safety, increasing pedestrian connectivity, improving access management, and beautifying the corridor.
Due to the impacts of the Railroad Avenue Improvements project on the Amtrak site, the county consulted with the city. The agreement with Leon County calls for the the city to reimburse the county for the shared costs of the driveway connections and existing driveway modifications included in the scope of work of the Amtrak Building bid.
Ram Construction and Development, LLC was the lowest bid. Renovations are anticipated to commence by early November and take approximately eight months to complete.