Sacramento Railyards Historic Shops Structural Evaluations

Sacramento, CA

As a result of the 1849 California Gold Rush and the desire to connect a rail line to the west coast, the Sacramento Railyards was born as the western hub of the transcontinental railroad. The rail line was completed in 1869, but the Sacramento Railyards continued to be one of the most significant sites for the west coast through the early 1990s. The remaining structures, known as the Central Shops, consist of eight historic buildings with the oldest dating back to the 1860's. Plans were developed to renovate the spaces for a multitude of different uses including museum, retail, restaurant, entertainment, and a farmer’s market. The project required a high level of ingenuity to provide solutions that conformed to the new use while maintaining the historic fabric of these beautiful structures.

Quick Facts

  • Size: 356,000 SF
  • Architect: Architectural Resources Group / Dreyfuss + Blackford Architecture
  • One structure has cast iron columns dating to 1869
  • The structures were obviously designed by engineers familiar with railroad bridges and material commonly used for railroad construction. A great example of this is long spanning trusses built of wood of the same dimensions as standard railroad ties.
  • Construction Cost: TBD
  • Contractor: TBD
  • Several different foundations were used for these historic structures including concrete, wood piles, brick, granite, and “rubble”
  • The interior wood framing of two structures have been burnt down and rebuilt at least one time (maybe twice). The original exterior brick walls remained and were reused in both cases.

Photo credit: Rudy Calpo Photography