Windsor became a station stop on Amtrak's Vermonter on December 15, 1995. The station is not to be confused with the stop in Windsor, CT that the Vermonter bypasses (although it does stop in Windsor Locks). Taking the train to Windsor, VT, getting on in New York-Penn Station (the busiest Amtrak station) the NEC conductors multiple times thought that Windsor wasn't even a station stop since it isn't on the Vermonter punched seat checks and there is such low ridership. On one recent trip I got a seat check for WNL (Windsor Locks, CT, also not on seat checks) instead of WNM (for this Windsor) Luckily the new crew that boards the train in Springfield comes through after leaving to verify everyone's destinations and mark everyone's seat checks the proper way to find the right passengers rewriting them with letters instead of just a putched hole for the destination (Windsor's WNM doesn't appear on them anyway). The station gets the dubious award of having the least amount of ridership for any station receiving daily Amtrak service with 687 boardings and alightings in FY2011 and ranks 501 out of 508. I should note that in 2011 Windsor had rail service for only 9 months of the year with buses substituting for track improvements and after the flooding from Hurricane Irene. These buses didn't not get off of I-91 (would have required a ten mile detour, Windsor doesn't have its own exit) skipping Windsor, and Claremont, New Hampshire. Going back to FY2010 it had the same dubious distinction but with 1,154 (497 out of 509). All of the stations with lower ridership are on the Triweekly Cardinal or Sunset Limited or North Philadelphia, only a stop by a few trains on weekdays. The second least used stop with daily train service (in 2011, in 2010 with a full year of service it's 37th least used) is right across the Connecticut River, Claremont, NH, 9 miles away, it's total yearly ridership in 2011 is double at 1240 passengers.
The station consists of an old concrete platform with just a yellow tactile warning strip that runs slightly above a curb of parking in the downtown of this small town that is the birthplace of Vermont, one of two capitals of the Vermont Republic, an independent country between 1777 and 1791. The platform is the Lewis Platform a plaque informs passengers and was dedicated on December 15, 1995 (the date of the stops opening) in Memory of Bill Lewis. His vision and determination brought passenger rail back to Windsor, Vermont. He had died just before this station's reality. This platform runs along Railroad Avenue (which provides the parking) between Depot Avenue and River Street. Towards its northern end is one story large brick depot that was built in 1901 and has arched stained glass above some of the windows. It was restored into a restaurant in the 1970s which has recently (between 2007 and 2011) closed. On the depot one of the doors can still has the ghosts of lettering for the baggage room visible. There is also wooden signs that read Windsor Station (a bottom one saying restaurant has been removed) street side of the depot. Presently the station lacks any place for seating or even a payphone for waiting passengers. When I got on the train there in 2004 there was, on the northside of the depot, two benches and a payphone next to them. In 2006 one bench was gone and when I revisited in 2012 both and the payphone were gone. A trash can has survived over the eight years.
The platform has a single sign of the 1990s generation with Windsor-Mt Acsuctney written above arrows with the direction of travel for Springfield/Washington, DC and St. Albans/Montreal (never served by the Vermonter except by a thruway bus). A new sign (basically one to cover up the current one with a bit of graffiti and a tiny, old pointless arrow logo) arrived at the station on Friday March 9, 2012 being brought via the train from farther north. It wasn't installed yet (nor were signs on Main Street directing people to the station, that also arrived) when I visited on March 20. (Donna Allen, "Windsor Train Station Gets New Signs," The News Review (Bellows Falls, Vt), March 14, 2012. This article misspells Amtrak as Amtrac every time). There is also a green sign on the side of the depot that lists the departure times in yellow and to call or visit the web to make reservations. This has been replaced between my visits. A resturant reopened inside the depot in September 2013.
Photos 1-5 were taken on 19 January, 2004, 6-19 on 18 August, 2006, 20-44 on 20 March, 2012, 45-53: 23 August, 2013, 54-55: 29 December, 2014
Last Updated: 29 December, 2014