Pontiac, IL (PON)
Pontiac is recognized for its charming downtown, which offers brick streets, swinging bridges, parks and historic buildings such as the 1874 Livingston County Courthouse.
711 West Water Street
Pontiac, IL 61764
Annual Station Ridership (2016): 15,300
- Facility Ownership: City of Pontiac
- Parking Lot Ownership: City of Pontiac
- Platform Ownership: City of Pontiac
- Track Ownership: Union Pacific Railroad
For information about Amtrak fares and schedules, please call 1-800-USA-RAIL (1-800-872-7245).
Pontiac officials were joined by state and Amtrak representatives on June 5, 2017, to dedicate a new $2.65 million station in Pontiac. Lincoln Service trains and the Texas Eagle began making regular stops the following day, relocating from the old Chicago & Alton Railroad (C&A) depot one block north.
The new 1,350 square foot depot is a contemporary structure of red brick interspersed with large expanses of glass. Both ends of the slim building include dramatically angled walls, which are echoed in the peaked seamed-metal roof. In addition to an enclosed waiting room, there is also an open-air waiting area for use during the warmer months. A new, accessible concrete platform includes a detectable warning strip, and customers may enjoy free Wi-Fi while waiting for trains.
Under the Federal Railroad Administration’s High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail (HSIPR) program, the state of Illinois received $1.2 billion to improve the vital Chicago-St. Louis rail corridor so that passenger trains will be able to attain regular speeds of 110 mph. When completed in late 2017, the upgraded line is expected to present an even stronger transportation alternative for drivers along the congested Interstate 55 corridor. Construction of the Pontiac station was funded under the HSIPR.
Time Magazine has recognized Pontiac, located along the Vermilion River, as one of the best small towns in the United States. The city’s dynamic downtown area offers brick streets, swinging bridges, beautiful parks, and historic buildings such as the Livingston County Courthouse, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The aesthetically pleasing courthouse was built in 1874 in the Second Empire style. A central clock tower stands 70 feet tall, and each of the four corners also features a dramatic tower.
Pontiac was named in honor of the famed Ottawa chief who led a rebellion against the British in 1763. The city was platted in 1837 and quickly became a center of economic growth. A saw mill was opened the following year, followed by a grain mill in 1851. The city’s businesses were further strengthened in the 1870s due to its location along the C&A railroad that connected Chicago, Springfield and St. Louis. The historic C&A depot was built between 1913 and 1915 and has been renovated to accommodate commercial uses.
The original path of Route 66, one of the first interstate highways in the U.S., runs through Pontiac. Route 66 added to the community’s industrial and retail development. From 1926 to the mid 1960s, hundreds of thousands of people traversed the legendary highway. The Illinois Route 66 Association Hall of Fame & Museum is on the square in Pontiac.
Pontiac boasts several restored historic houses such as the Jones House and the Catherine V. Yost Museum and Arts Center. The Jones House, a Gothic Revival home built in the late 1850s, is the oldest brick home in Pontiac and one of the few remaining pre-Civil War buildings. Tours are available to the public. The Yost Museum, a Queen Anne style home built in 1898, is a local center for performing arts as well as a living museum. Catherine Yost, daughter of Z. F. Yost, the attorney for whom the home was built, studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and her paintings now line the walls of the historic home. The lush vegetation surrounding the property provides a haven for visiting songbirds.
Pontiac is the setting of the 1984 film, Grandview, U.S.A., starring Jamie Lee Curtis and Patrick Swayze. It is also the hometown of actress Moira Harris.
Amtrak does not offer ticketing or baggage services at this facility, which is served by nine daily trains. The Lincoln Service is financed primarily through funds made available by the Illinois Department of Transportation.
Station Building (with waiting room)
- 20 Short Term Parking Spaces
Number of spaces available for Amtrak passengers to park for the day only, not overnight. Parking fees may apply.
- Accessible Payphones
- Accessible Platform
Accessible platform is a barrier-free path from the drop-off area outside the station to the station platform.
- Accessible Restrooms
- Accessible Ticket Office
- Accessible Waiting Room
- Accessible Water Fountain
- Baggage Storage
Baggage storage is an area where passengers may store their bags, equivalent to "left luggage" in Europe. A storage fee may apply.
- Bike Boxes
- Checked Baggage
- Dedicated Parking
- Enclosed Waiting Area
- Help With Luggage
- High Platform
A high platform is a platform at the level of the vestibule of the train, with the exception of Superliners.
Self-service lockers are available in select stations for passenger baggage storage.
- Long-term Parking Spaces
Number of spaces available for Amtrak passengers to park overnight. Parking fees may apply.
- Parking Attendant
- Pay Phones
- Shipping Boxes
- Ski Bags
- Wheelchair Lift
Wheelchair lift is a platform-mounted lift for loading passengers from low platforms onto trains that do not have onboard ramps.
For passengers who cannot walk far or at all, we offer a wheelchair to move the passengers around within the station. At some stations this may be a battery-powered people mover. The wheelchair or other types of movers must not leave the station or be moved onto the train.