Last week, the Colorado Springs City Council approved a lease agreement between the city and the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad for the restoration of Steam Locomotive #168, which is on display in Antlers Park.

C&TSRR proposes to remove the locomotive from its current static display, restore the engine to working condition and operate it as part of their “museum on wheels,” according to a news release from the city.

When the restoration is complete the locomotive will become an integral part of a truly historical railroad composed of vintage steam locomotives and restored historic passenger cars dating back to the 1880s.

It will operate on the railroad’s 64-mile stretch of track, which is the last surviving portion of the narrow gauge rail line operated by Denver & Rio Grande Railroad. The lease agreement requires that #168 retain its National Register designation and continue to serve as a memorial to Gen. William Jackson Palmer, the visionary that founded both Colorado Springs and the Denver & Rio Grande.

As a result of the action taken at the City Council meeting, the C&TSRR will now begin a review and approval process by the National Register of Historic Places.  That decision is expected by July. The locomotive will remain in place until that time. Once removed from display, the site in Antlers Park will be graded and seeded with turf grass.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Happy to see this engine put to good use. Unfortunately I cannot say the same for the Antlers Park, as it has turned into a community for homeless people. I remember, many years ago, eating my sack lunch there on warm sunny days, a break from being inside at the Holly Sugar Building.

  2. Finally some good news and acknowledgement of the unique area where we reside. This type of business needs to be encouraged and promoted. Good show. However, restoring a locomotive engine is not as easy as it sounds. Steam engines had a bad habit of literally consuming themselves. Wish them luck.

  3. I am thankful that the City has seen the value in allowing the Cumbres and Toltec Railroad to restore the locomotive in Antlers Park to operating condition and give it a new life in Southern Colorado.

    I have ridden on the Cumbres and Toltec out of Antonito and it’s a wonderful experience and absolutely one of the most beautiful train rides you can find in Colorado.

    I hope that the Cumbres and Toltec will also be able to offer some special deals to the citizens of Colorado Springs so that we can continue to enjoy the train that actually belongs to the citizens of Colorado.

    How many of you know that we own the train? It’s jointly owned between the States of Colorado and New Mexico. How great can that be and how great can it be for the 168 Locomotive to be part of that!

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