*October 1907

Union Station opens.

*May 16, 1967 -- A commission headed by Rep. Kenneth L. Gray (D-Ill.) announces a plan to transform Union Station into a National Visitor Center at a cost of up to $20 million.

*March 12, 1968 -- President Johnson signs legislation to create the National Visitor Center, saying it "will assure that in the future, visitors to Washington will be given a proper welcome."

*June 4, 1976 -- Construction of a parking garage for the National Visitor Center is ordered suspended by the Interior Department because of a $4.9 million cost overrun.

*July 4, 1976 -- The National Visitor Center, estimated to have cost $42 million, opens after a three-month delay, drawing praise from many of the 20,000 bicentennial visitors.

*Sept. 28, 1976 -- Federal officials announce a proposal to convert part of the National Visitor Center back to a railroad station.

*Feb. 23, 1981 -- Federal officials close the National Visitor Center, declaring the building unsafe because of leaks and other deterioration.

*March 2, 1983 -- Secretary of Transportation Elizabeth Hanford Dole announces a plan to renovate and reopen the building as a "vibrant" railroad terminal with restaurants and shops.

*March 22, 1984 -- D.C. and federal officials announce the awarding of a $24.8 million contract to complete the parking garage.

*Dec. 2, 1985 -- Demolition begins inside the building to prepare for renovation, expected to be completed in late 1987 or early 1988.