On April 21, 1888, businessman of Spokane Falls subscribed $175,000 for the Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern, so it would not pass too far from the town on its way east from Puget Sound. The SLSE professed also to be interested in the Colville region.
The Spokane Falls and Northern (Great Northern) would use a union depot on the north side of the river to be shared by the Lake Shore, now familiarly the “Seattle and Elsewhere,” and the Oregon Railway and Navigation (Union Pacific). The red brick building, built by the SF&N, was 2 stories high and stood on the river bank on the east side of Division Street. The site was covered with rocky hillocks, and crews working day and night shifts shook the city awake at 2 o’clock each morning blasting to level the area. The rock debris was dumped into ponds and used to extend the property toward the river by filling, and operation that cost approximately $100,000.