5 Main St

5 Main Street (Walkill Valley Railroad Station; La Stazione Restaurant):

The distinctive clapboard structure now at 5 Main Street was built in 1907 on the site of a previous structure constructed in 1870 by local builder John C. Schaffer. Schaffer was originally contracted to build a 20 x 80-foot depot for the Wallkill Valley Railroad, which at the time was extending its service from Montgomery to Kingston. Rail service in New Paltz began December 20, 1870 and the station opened the following year. Passenger service at the New Paltz station was discontinued in 1937 and freight service in 1958, though the nearby tracks continued to be used by the Penn Central and Conrail systems until all services were discontinued on December 31, 1977.
The original Schaffer building burnt on April 23, 1907, and a new structure was built that same year. The second station was built according to the tastes of the period: a fine example of vernacular railway design, with a gently sloped hip roof, numerous shingle-style details, and expansive porches.
The building fell into disrepair after the suspension of rail services in 1977, and was nearly torn down in the years following, but major exterior renovations and a historically sensitive restoration were completed in 1987 by Wilro Builders of LaGrange. By this time the large water tank to the north of the building had been torn down. In 1999 the building became a restaurant; a major expansion followed in 2002-03, adding approximately 370 square feet of interior space to the south end of the 1907 building and a 1,000 square-foot outdoor terrace. In 2002 a number of mature oak trees were removed from the site in order to create an automobile exit onto Huguenot Street and to improve drainage.
The building has historic landmark status by the Historic Preservation Commission. The nomination form notes that this structure is the last Wallkill Valley Railroad station remaining in its original location. It is a significant and beautifully preserved example of its style. An Italian restaurant since 1999, the building has been the home to several local enterprises in the years since the structure was abandoned as a rail station, most notably a public-access television studio, a real estate office, and a wellness center.

Keywords:  La Stazione restaurant, Wallkill Valley Railroad, Conrail, Wilro Builders

Sources:      Address book, Haviland-Heidgerd Historical Collection, Elting Memorial Library
    Carlton Mabee and John K. Jacobs, Listen to the Whistle: An Anecdotal History of the Wallkill Valley Railroad in Ulster and Orange Counties, New York (2009)



5 Main La Stazione

5 Main St. La Stazione

RR Station, New Paltz, NY

Depot, New Paltz, NY

Tax parcel Number 86.33-2-6.100
Street number 5
Street Name Main St
Present Use Commercial
Historic Function Transportation
Historic Use Rail Related
Date of Construction 1908
Dates of alteration c1995, 2003
Style Shingle Style
No. of Stories 1
Construction method wood frame
Exterior material: historic 1 wood clapboard
Exterior material: historic 2 wood shingle
Exterior material: present
Roof Type hipped
Roof Material asphalt
Foundation Material brick
Porch location 1 wrap
Porch condition intact
Window condition replaced
Overall integrity altered
Contributing Yes
Endangered No
Distinctive features Railroad passenger station plan form w/ hipped roof w/ deep overhangs on all sides w/ massive braces, exposed rafter ends; open baggage canopy N end, bay windows on E & W sides; addition to S end
Notes notable example of type
Outbldg 1 type pump house
Outbldg 1 date c2000
Outbuilding Condition intact
Outbldg 1 distinctive features 1 story, gable roof, wood clapboard siding
Outbldg 2 type
Outbldg 2 date
Landscape features paved parking lot; abuts rail trail


Designed by CRREO at SUNY New Paltz