Oregon Depot Museum Board Chairman Roger Cain made a presentation to the Oregon City Council on Tuesday regarding the possible lease of a restored railroad car that may be coming to town.
The depot board has been in contact with Mike Abernathy, the owner of a 1947 Zephyr dome car about it being relocated to Oregon.
“It’s a feasible, doable project,” Cain said. “There’s been a tremendous amount of support financially and from local manufacturers. The relevance to the Oregon Depot is there. It’s part of a set that traveled from Chicago to Minneapolis where it stopped in Oregon both ways. The car is in Charles City, Iowa. He’s been spending money to where it can be licensed to travel.”
The renovations of the car aren’t finished yet. Cain said the car will be worth around $500,000 when completed and it will have a patio, fence, seat 24 people and feature a kitchen. It could be used for those that want to hold events in it.
Burlington Northern has been “convinced” to extend tracks and lease land for the exit and entrance of the car at no cost, Cain said.
“I’m not sure when completion will be,” Cain said. “I’m guessing two years,”
Cain said that without being owned by the city, the car can’t be put on city property. He said Abernathy understands that and will relinquish ownership after he passes away.
The city did not take any action on the project. It will be reviewed by the council at a later date after some decisions that must be made by Burlington Northern.
The carriage ride route for Candlelight Walk was unanimously approved by the board Tuesday. Rides will be offered Nov. 28 and Dec. 19.
Candlelight Walk’s lineup was rolled out last week and will be different from years’ past due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Christmas isn’t canceled in Oregon,” Oregon Mayor Ken Williams said. “It will take place over more days and there will be raffles, decorated businesses, our people can sign up to have Santa and Mrs. Claus drive by in the firetruck. Merchants will give out craft bags instead of the kids indoor carnival. It’s going to be really neat.”