Although it is less majestic than Canfranc Station in the Pyrenees, Lexos Station is an isolated jewel of late 19th century railway architecture.
This station surprises the traveller who arrives in the small hamlet of Lexos, on the edge of Aveyron.
A bit of History...
Its monumentality and its architectural quality are equal to the real railway crossroads that was Lexos during the years 1860-1880, at the confluence of the lines Montauban-Lexos, Carmaux-Vindrac and Brives-Capdenac-Toulouse.
The important construction site of the station of Lexos extends over several years between 1858, date of opening of the Capdenac-Montauban line and 1883, date of the completion of its construction so that at the beginning it is a temporary building made of boards, dismantled in 1870, which is used as station.
In 1864, the commissioning of the first Paris-Toulouse railway line by Capdenac generated exceptional activity for the area but the station's golden age was rapidly declining.
From the early 1880s, the creation of the competing line Paris-Toulouse via Cahors and Limoges, more direct and less hilly, will begin the decline of the monumental station of Lexos.
The architect Tanzi designed a travellers' building of Renaissance inspiration.
Built in brick and stone, it is perfectly symmetrical: a central pavilion, two low wings for the station's waiting rooms and buffet and two side pavilions.
The facades are decorated with classical motifs, diamond points on the arch keys, pilasters, ...
The station is often compared to its Parisian counterpart of Austerlitz, in miniature version of course.
The passengers' building does indeed share the composition and style of classical inspiration.
But the building does not have the daring steel structure of the Austerlitz station.
While a demolition permit had been filed by the SNCF in 2006, the municipality of Varen, anxious to preserve this heritage emblematic of the prosperity of the station of Varen in the nineteenth century, has, on July 11, 2007, registered as a Historic Monument, the station of Lexos.
If you are a buyer, contact the SNCF!