Heritage Plaza (Albany, Georgia)

Union Station depot
Location Roosevelt Ave. and N. Front St.
Nearest city Albany, Georgia
Built 1913
NRHP reference # 75000590
Added to NRHP 1975
Albany Railroad Depot Historic District (Heritage Plaza)
Location 211-213 Roosevelt Ave.
Nearest city Albany, Georgia
Coordinates 31°34′55″N 84°9′0″W / 31.58194°N 84.15000°W / 31.58194; -84.15000Coordinates: 31°34′55″N 84°9′0″W / 31.58194°N 84.15000°W / 31.58194; -84.15000
NRHP reference # 84000979
Added to NRHP 1982

Albany Railroad Depot Historic District (also known as Heritage Plaza) is located at the 100 block of West Roosevelt Avenue in Albany, Georgia, United States, and is governed by the Thronateeska Heritage Center, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization incorporated in 1974 for the purpose of historic preservation and science education in Southwest Georgia. The Heritage Plaza includes the Tift Warehouse (constructed in 1857), the Union Station depot (constructed in 1913), the Railway Express Agency building and Albany’s last remaining brick street and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP).[1]


The station was built in 1912 to serve passenger trains of the Albany and Northern, Atlantic Coast Line, Central of Georgia, Georgia Northern, and Seaboard Air Line railroads, replacing an earlier 1857 depot.[2]

In 1974, concerned and community-spirited citizens championed the cause for revitalization of the historic downtown railroad depot area. Thronateeska Heritage Foundation, Inc. resulted from the merger of the Southwest Georgia Historical Society, organized in 1969, and the Albany Junior Museum, Inc., founded in 1959 by the Junior League of Albany.

Through Thronateeska’s efforts, the 1913 Union Station depot, located in what is now known as Heritage Plaza, was preserved as a legendary landmark, converted into a museum, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.[1] The Wetherbee Planetarium was originally opened in the old Railway Express Agency (REA) building in 1980. A new Wetherbee Planetarium and Science Museum was constructed between the Railway Express Agency building and the Fryer-Merritt House in 2008. The new building incorporated architectural features of the original 1926 Central Georgia Roundhouse on the façade of the building.

In 1982, the Tift Warehouse (constructed in 1857 as the original passenger and freight depot), the REA building and Albany’s last remaining brick street were added to the National Register with the Union Station depot and listed as Albany’s Railroad Depot Historic District.

Other historic structures have been relocated to the Plaza to preserve historic structures. The Fryer-Merritt House, built in the 1880s at 411 Pine Avenue, was relocated to Heritage Plaza in 1994 and renovated. The Hilsman Kitchen was originally moved from the home site of Dr. Hilsman (one of Albany’s first doctors) to Heritage Plaza in 1977 and placed next to the REA building.[3]


  1. 1 2 National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  2. Storey, Steve. "Albany Depots". Georgia's Railroad History and Heritage. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
  3. http://www.heritagecenter.org/about.html
Preceding station   Atlantic Coast Line Railroad   Following station
TerminusAlbany Brunswick
toward Brunswick
Albany Dunnellon
toward Dunnellon
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