Located along Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin in the garden city of Malaysia, the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station or Stesen Keretapi KL is a train station with remarkable architecture of Eastern and Western varieties. It was built in 1910 to serve as a substitute station for an old station of the same location. It was Kuala Lumpur’s center for railway transportation before KL Sentral became the city’s main transportation hub in 2001.
Assuming an Anglo-Asian architecture, the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station was designed by an English architect, Arthur Benison Hubback. It had a main terminal located right in its front with three platforms in the back for the four railway lines. The main building was of Mughal architecture with Western influences. There are horseshoes and ogee arch designs on the building, and the shiny roof coverings of the platforms were designed to be partially open for air to come through. The platforms were enclosed by walls and the main building does not appear to be connected to it, but two underground passageways actually connect them.
It officially started its operation on August of the same year it was built. And in 1986, the building, along with its interiors, were refurbished and took on a more modern design. The facade was only retouched and preserved, although the windows were replaced with modern windows. Platform extensions were created with white walls, arches and large concrete columns supported by the roof and the ticket office on the other end. It was also outfitted with modern furnishings including air conditioning. The new waiting halls were designed to be more comfortable and some modern facilities were added too, like information counters, snack bars and vending machines, money-changing booths, souvenir shops, restaurants and many others. And in 1995, it also adopted the use of fare gates and ticket counters.
Nowadays, although it is no longer used as a transportation center, the KTM Komuter uses it as one of its stations. It is also used as a bus station by the NICE Executive Coach and Plusliner Economy Express that runs from Malaysia to Singapore and back. And even though it’s not as popular with commuters as it used to be, the building is still very popular to many art-lovers, photographers, architects and historians.
HOW TO GET THERE
Located near the Railway Administration Building and the National Mosque, the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station is right at the heart of the city. It is linked by an underground passage to the Malayan Railway Building, another historic edifice of Moorish design influenced by the British colonial period.
To get there, you can take the KTM Komuter train and get off the Kuala Lumpur Station. This is the KTM Komuter’s station servicing the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station so you can just go out of the building to see the building façade. A good spot for taking pictures of the whole building is the KTM Berhad Headquarters, which you can go to by using the underpass. You can also go to the entrance hall of the main building and take some pictures. Some floors of the building, however, are not opened to public.