I know you’re busy and think you have no time to be amazed, but some things are good for the soul and the restoration of a building is one of them. Go, lay your hands on the beautiful red brick, in remarkable condition, at the Bus Station. Yes, the Bus Station!
Built originally in the 1930’s, the restoration of this gem, if under appreciated is a sin. That’s according to yours truly who is seeing Rocky Mount with new eyes and enthusiasm, which I am giving away free to all who come to enjoy this building. Bring the children, they will love the whole scene. The attention to and restoration of original doors and interior signs, a clock….you have to have a clock…the recasting of the knobs on the fencing, grill work, all of it is fantastic. A new overhang out front has been built to keep passengers dry. Exterior and interiors are immaculate. The hardscape that connects the Train and Bus station is perfect for events, small corporate functions, and fund-raisers for organizations. A different venue with historic interest. There is adequate landscaping that soften the edges, concrete planters for focal interest, and a sculpture in the distance. This area, this building, are assets, a destination to bring visiting folks that are interested in preservation and transportation. It is all available at the bus station for heaven’s sake, something the community can be proud of. As you walk away, glance back and think of the stories that could be told about those who have come and gone from this place. Stepping onto or off a bus, taking them to far off destinations or bringing them home. When the new story is written about the reimagining of Rocky Mount, perhaps the opening scene will be seen through the eyes of a native son or daughter, returning on a bus, and discovering the accomplishments of all who are working to restore the past, while creating a great new future.
This post is dedicated to Peter Varney, retired assistant city manager, who gave me the gift of the bus station. I was introduced to Wanda while there and asked: “Tell me about Mr. Varney.” She beamed and said, “He is a great man!” He certainly is, and without his vision and leadership, there would be no bus station and no a lot of other things.