Union Station users should brace for a long haul as the $640-million renovation of the historic transportation hub gets going in spring. The work, including excavating a large new lower level to house shops and restaurants, will take until 2015.

Though it’s a big project, it’s not overly complex, said Graham Brown, president of Carillion Construction Inc., whose Vanbots division was named yesterday as general contractor.

“Probably the biggest challenge ... is dealing with the 65 million people a year that come through this concourse, and making sure that life goes on as well as it has to date, during the period of construction.”


Commuters will encounter lots of construction hoarding, Brown said. “We’ll make that hoarding attractive, we’ll try and make it amusing in places so people bear with us during construction.”

When the revitalization is complete, the new Union Station will rank with the best in the U.S. and Europe, vowed Mayor David Miller.

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