SAL depot in Sarasota : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

Hello to all; I would like to build a model (HO) of the SAL depot that once stood on Lemon Ave. in downtown Sarasota. I have a good picture from the north and many good ones of the canopy. I also have two from the south but both are obscured by autos and large bushes. Worst of all is that I have no idea what it loked like under the canopy, that wall is not visible in anything available to me. If anyone can help I would be happy to pay all costs. Thank you very much

-- Walter Presley (, February 14, 2003


The SAL and ACL entered Sarasota from the north on separate alignments. They meet at a wye in town and only one line goes south.This has been interesting and informative even tho I didnt get any new info on the SAL depot. Thank you

-- Walter Presley (, February 22, 2003.

It has been along time but wasn't there a connecting track between the SAL and ACL in Sarasota that was around Lemon St and crossed the main (Highway 41)street through town. Look at an old street map. There was a "Y" at the ACL connection. That was 40 years ago.

-- Dick Kearns (, February 20, 2003.

Can't answer your question about pass tracks in Sarasota on SAL. I often speculated about handling Office Cars at this location; the southbound move was easy, just pull high (south) past the switch in Lemon Ave. and shove the car to rest on the trestle, Platform First. The return move north had to be a problem; where did the car turn? Did it go to Tampa Platform first against the train? This was Sarasota in the 40's; when the ACL was the end of Main Street, before Washington Blvd, & before 301. SAL was a big interest because of Street Running but I was an ACL fan; went on to become an Operating Officer up north on Richmond Division. That's why still the interest in SAL 'special moves' to the Office Car Track at Sarasota.

-- JR Morton (, February 19, 2003.

The Ringlings also parked their private car on that trestle. Mr Morton was obviously paying more attention to such things than the 16 year old twit that I was. Can he tell me where the switchs for the depot passing track were? Thank you once again

-- Walter Presley (, February 19, 2003.

Continuing with this thread: does anyone remember the 'Office Car' track that was built out on pilings in Sarasota Bay??? The track originated about 12 car lengths south of the station, had a switch in the middle of Lemon Ave that faced south with the switch stand buired in the street beneath a smooth metal cover so vehicle traffic could drive over it. The track curved toward the west with an arc behind buildings on Lemon Ave. & exiting perpendicular between store fronts to cross Palm Ave. and gain access to the tresle on the Bay. This was built on pilings and was two car lengths long with the walk way on the North side complete with Electricity, Phone, & Sanitary connections for the Office Cars. A Car Inspector was always in attendance when a SAL Car was "in town."

-- JR Morton (, February 18, 2003.

Thannks for the tip,a very interesting collection. However all Sarasota depot pictures were of the much more famous ACL depot at the top of Main St. The SAL depot was right down town with tracks in the street. I have been researching this project for 3 years I am not going to quit now.

-- Walter Presley (, February 18, 2003.

Walter, there are several pictures of the depot at Use the advance search and put "Sarasota Railroad" in the search text.

-- Carey Stevens (, February 17, 2003.

I am very sorry but Ijust reread Mr. Turners ans. and need to add that I am interested in 1967 1968 period. Your book has an excelent picture of the station from the south east but I cannot see the east wall of the actual building. Thank you very much

-- Walter Presley (, February 16, 2003.

I have that book,it has been very helpful. do you mean that the east wall wasnot modified when the canopy was added? I seem to remember a large tinted window under there but i was very young. Thank you very much

-- Walter Presley (, February 16, 2003.

Walter, are you looking for a photo of the brick psgr station - pre canopy days? If so, you'll find it in my book 'Railroads of Southwest Florida' which can be bought on the Barnes & Noble or Amazon websites. In the 1930s, the station was modernized, its physical appearance was altered, and the canopy was added. That, too is pictured.

-- Gregg Turner (, February 15, 2003.

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