News & Reviews News Wire Landmark Station Inn at Cresson, Pa., is sold

Landmark Station Inn at Cresson, Pa., is sold

By Dan Cupper | May 13, 2022

New owners of bed & breakfast are career railroader J. Alex Lang and his wife Leah

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White wood-sided building in snow
White wood-sided building in snow
The Station Inn, a railfan landmark in Cresson, Pa., has been sold. (Dan Cupper)

CRESSON, Pa. – The Station Inn, a longtime railfan landmark bed & breakfast in western Pennsylvania, has been sold to Alex and Leah Lang of the Pittsburgh area.

The inn’s founder, Tom Davis, died Oct. 5 [see “Station Inn owner Tom Davis, 90, dies,” Trains News Wire, Oct. 13, 2021] and it remained open while the family deliberated over its future. Davis had been proprietor and innkeeper for 28 years.

Facing Norfolk Southern’s Pittsburgh Line, the inn’s front porch has been a favorite hangout for generations of photographers and train-watchers. It is one of a long string of railroad sites along the former Pennsylvania railroad main line, both on the East Slope and West Slope of the Allegheny Mountain summit.

Counting helper movements and Amtrak’s daily New York-Pittsburgh Pennsylvanian passenger train, Cresson sees at least 50 train movements a day. In addition, R.J. Corman’s former-PRR Clearfield Lines interchanges traffic with NS at Cresson.

A frequent guest at the Inn over the years, Lang has deep roots in the railroad industry. He is chief information officer for Transtar LLC, which owns and operates seven former U.S. Steel Corp. switching railroads in six states, including the Union Railroad in Pittsburgh. He was formerly vice president of equipment and technology at Carload Express, Inc., also based in Pittsburgh. He is active with the Traffic Club of Pittsburgh and the American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association.

In a statement posted on the Inn’s web site, Stew and Joe Davis wrote: “We are thrilled that our primary objective in the sale has been achieved: Our brother’s dream will live on, the Inn will continue to operate as a B&B for railfans.”

They described the sales process this way: “[It] involved a competitive bid and proposal stage followed by evaluations, selection and then negotiation with the buyers. The proposals were evaluated based on vision for the Inn (30%), plan to achieve the vision (40%), price (25%) and other (5 %). There were six interested and well-qualified buyers and proposals were received from four of them.”

They chose the Langs, they said, because:

— They are knowledgeable railroaders.

— They have had a personal and professional relationship with Tom for over 20 years.

— Mr. Lang has extensive ties to the rail community.

— Ms. Lang is passionate about the Inn.

— As longtime frequent guests of the Inn, they know what was and what is. We believe they have the ideas, wherewithal and energy to not only restore the Inn to a consistent and comfortable operation but to further expand on its possibilities.

In addition to the Station Inn, nearby railfan sites include the Railroaders Memorial Museum in Altoona and its affiliated Horseshoe Curve National Historic Landmark , the Tunnel Inn B&B and Tunnels Park & Museum at Gallitzin, the Cresson observation platform, Carney’s Crossing near Lilly, the Station Museum at Portage, and the Cassandra Overlook.

More information on the Station Inn is available at its website.

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