The train doesn’t stop as it races by, but a historic Redmond train station building is back in use.
And it gives the public a place to get financial services, sit back and enjoy a latte and even learn a bit about the history of the city.
Retail consultant Tanney Staffenson and his wife, Shelby, fell in love with the long-vacant Redmond Depot when they first saw it in 2017. They bought it from the city later that year for $250,000.
“We thought about it and decided we need to come up with a proposal,” Shelby said at a Sept. 5 ribbon cutting for the building at 3716 SW 21st Place, just off the Yew Avenue exit from South Highway 97. “Who doesn’t love the building? It’s an absolutely amazing space.”
But they didn’t want the 2,200 square foot facility, which was last open in 2013, to be off limits to the public. Working with the city, the Staffensons dedicated half the building for an office for Chris Richie of Edward Jones Investments, while the other half is a sit-down location for Redmond Coffee Company and exhibits from the Greater Redmond Historical Society.
The historical society has been without a place to display its collection since its museum in the former City Hall building closed in 2017, when the city planned to redevelop the property. Now the depot features display cases filled with its historic cameras and hats, and the building’s walls are covered with old photos and interpretive messages from the city.
“We were excited,” said historical society President Tonia Cain. “They wanted to know what we needed to make it work for us. First off, I told them, we needed an office.”
They got the small office near the main entrance to the depot, which will be staffed part time. The historical society can also use a conference room that is also available to the public.
The historical society plans to switch out the exhibits with other items in its 1,600-piece collection (a number that doesn’t include the group’s collection of photographs) every six months to a year. While they would still like to have a full-size museum someday, the members are pleased with the new setup.
“We have so many things to show, but it’s going to be a while,” said board member Jo Weigand, a relative of town namesakes Frank and Josephine Redmond.
And if you’re going to sit through a meeting or just relax, you can do it with coffee. Redmond Coffee Company owner Lisa Parker, whose Prineville Coffee Company opened nine years ago, opened her first Redmond store on SW Veterans Way in January 2019. Despite being in town less than a year, she jumped at the chance to expand.
“We were just presented with an opportunity to create a community coffee shop, where there is a place to sit down,” Parker said. “Who doesn’t love this building? It’s absolutely amazing space.”
The shop offers coffee, espresso-blended drinks and other beverages, as well as a small food menu, Parker said.
“Our hope is it’s going to be a space to enjoy our community of Redmond and also provide amazing coffee and great service,” she said.
Redmond Coffee Company fills a void of sit-down coffee shops on the south end of town, particularly with the rapidly growing area around Ridgeview High School, said Heather Cassaro, communications director for the city.
“You have two reasons to visit,” she said. “I’m visiting for the history and the coffee.”
The building itself has quite a bit of history. Opening in 1912, it served rail passengers until the 1960s at its original location at 303 E. First St. It was shuttered in the 1980s after being used for office and storage space.
The city took over the depot building and eventually moved it to its current location off SW Airport Way to make way for the rerouting of Highway 97.
“They took it down brick by brick, which is amazing,” Tanney Staffenson said. “I just think it’s an amazing story.”
Two restaurants came and went from the building, with the Red Dog Depot, owned by Cascade Lakes Brewing, closing six years ago.
“We saw it sitting empty and thought, what could be done here?” Tanney said.
The Staffensons and their tenants worked on the building right up to its grand opening event, Shelby said. They hope the community will love it as much as they do.
“It’s been a labor of love, but it’s nice to see at this point,” Shelby said. “We really hope the community enjoys it the vision we have for it as a cool gathering place.”
— Reporter: 541-548-2186, email@example.com