Pacific Central Station

Pacific Central Station is a railway station in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, which acts as the western terminus of Via Rail's cross-country The Canadian service to Toronto and the northern terminus of Amtrak's Cascades service to Seattle and Portland. The station is also Vancouver's main intercity bus terminal. The station is wheelchair accessible and is staffed with full Via services. The station is a candidate for the northern terminus of a possible future high-speed rail line being considered primarily by the US state of Washington.[3]

Pacific Central
General information
Location1150 Station Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Coordinates49°16′25″N 123°05′53″W / 49.27361°N 123.09806°W / 49.27361; -123.09806
Owned byVia Rail
Platforms3 island platforms
Bus stands24
Bus operators
ArchitectPratt and Ross
Architectural styleBeaux-Arts[1]
Other information
StatusStaffed station
Station code
OpenedNovember 2, 1919 (1919-11-02)
Previous names
  • Canadian National Railway Station
  • False Creek Station
FY 2023221,390[2] (Amtrak)
Preceding station Via Rail Following station
Terminus The Canadian Mission Harbour
toward Toronto
One-way operation
Preceding station Amtrak Following station
toward Eugene
Amtrak Cascades Terminus
Former services
Preceding station Rocky Mountaineer Following station
Terminus First Passage to the West Kamloops
towards Banff
Journey Through the Clouds Kamloops
towards Jasper
Coastal Passage Rocky Mountaineer
towards Banff or Jasper
Preceding station Canadian National Railway Following station
Terminus Main Line New Westminster
toward Montreal
Preceding station Via Rail Following station
Terminus Super Continental Jasper
toward Toronto
Preceding station Great Northern Railway Following station
New Westminster
toward Seattle
Vancouver, BC – Seattle Terminus
Reference no.4527
Pacific Central Station is located in Greater Vancouver Regional District
Pacific Central Station
Pacific Central Station
Location in Vancouver
Pacific Central Station is located in British Columbia
Pacific Central Station
Pacific Central Station
Location in British Columbia
Pacific Central Station is located in Canada
Pacific Central Station
Pacific Central Station
Location in Canada


The station in 1918, then known as False Creek Station. Shows the land around the building being filled in.
The station's arrivals and departures board in 1981

Pacific Central Station was built in 1917 by the Canadian Northern Railway as the terminus of its line to Edmonton.[4] It was dedicated on November 2, 1919, a day after the first Canadian National trains began using the station.[5][6] It was originally named False Creek Station and was designed by the architecture firm Pratt and Ross.[7] The building was designated a heritage railway station in 1991.[1]

Amtrak service to the terminal was originally offered on the Pacific International from 1972 to 1981, when it ceased due to budget cuts.[8] Cross-border service returned in 1995 with the introduction of the Mount Baker International, which was later folded into the modern-day Cascades brand.[9]

On November 8, 2010, the Canadian government announced a $5.1 million plan to rebuild parts of the station, including refurbishing windows, masonry, and the roof of the building.[10]





Amtrak Cascades


Amtrak Cascades provides two daily round trips between Vancouver and Seattle, Washington, with one daily train continuing to Portland, Oregon.

Amtrak passengers bound for the United States go through United States border preclearance inside the station prior to boarding in Vancouver, with a brief 10-minute stop at the Peace Arch Border Crossing for agents to collect forms. Canadian-bound passengers go through Canadian customs at the station upon arrival; northbound trains travelling towards Pacific Central Station do not stop at the border.

This is in contrast to Amtrak's international services on the East Coast (Adirondack to Montreal and Maple Leaf to Toronto) where passengers are processed by customs immediately after passing over the border.

To enable customs processing away from the border crossing, Amtrak trains are sequestered inside a secure caged area at Pacific Central Station. Additionally, trains make no stops in Canada other than at Pacific Central Station.[11]

Via Rail Canadian


Via Rail's Canadian train offers twice-weekly cross-country service to Toronto via Edmonton, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg; weekly service to Edmonton (summer only).[12]

Pacific Central Station is Vancouver's main intercity bus terminal.

Bus company Destinations
Amtrak Thruway (operated by Cantrail)[13] Bellingham, Seattle
BC Ferries Connector[14] Victoria (via Tsawwassen ferry terminal)
Ebus Kelowna, Kamloops, Salmon Arm
FlixBus[15] Bellingham, Seattle
Greyhound Lines Bellingham, Seattle
Rider Express[16] Kamloops, Revelstoke, Banff, Calgary and Edmonton
YVR Skylynx Squamish, Whistler

Public transit


Pacific Central Station is immediately adjacent to Main Street–Science World station on the Expo Line of Greater Vancouver's SkyTrain rapid transit system.

See also



  1. ^ a b "Canadian National Railways / Via Rail Station". Canada's Historic Places. Parks Canada. September 1, 1991. Retrieved April 26, 2017. 1150 Station Street, Vancouver, British Columbia
  2. ^ "Pacific Central Station (VAC)". Great American Stations. Retrieved January 25, 2024.
  3. ^ "Surrey could be the location of Metro Vancouver's station for high-speed rail to Seattle". DailyHive. Retrieved February 17, 2022.
  4. ^ " –". Retrieved April 14, 2022.
  5. ^ "New C. N. Station is Declared Open By Mayor Gale". The Vancouver Sun. November 2, 1919. p. 1. Retrieved January 24, 2020 – via  
  6. ^ "C.N.R. Trains Today Enter and Leave Fine New Depot". The Province. November 1, 1919. p. 12. Retrieved January 24, 2020 – via  
  7. ^ Mackie, John (November 14, 2012). "This day in history: November 2, 1919". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved May 25, 2019.
  8. ^ "Amtrak train ends run". The Province. October 1, 1981. p. A6. Retrieved January 24, 2020 – via  
  9. ^ Daniels, Alan (May 25, 1995). "Seattle-Vancouver train service back on track". The Vancouver Sun. p. A1. Retrieved January 24, 2020 – via  
  10. ^ "Ottawa to fund multi-million reno of Vancouver train station". Archived from the original on December 4, 2010. Retrieved November 9, 2010.
  11. ^ Fesler, Stephen (November 22, 2019). "Amtrak Cascades Could Get Customs Preclearance in Canada Shaving At Least 10 Minutes Off Trip". The Urbanist. Retrieved April 19, 2022.
  12. ^ "Vancouver, BC – Pacific Central Station (VAC) – Great American Stations". Retrieved May 25, 2022.
  13. ^ "Home". Cantrail - Takes you away. August 8, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2022.
  14. ^ "Schedules". BC Ferries Connector. Retrieved May 25, 2022.
  15. ^ Chiappetta, Felicia (May 24, 2022). "New bus service will get you from Vancouver to Seattle for just $18". Vancouver Is Awesome. Retrieved May 25, 2022.
  16. ^ "Locations". Rider Express. Retrieved May 25, 2022.