The Antwerpen-Centraal train station was built between 1899 and 1905 by the design of the engineer Clement Van Bogaert. It includes a gigantic entrance hall of 186 m length, 66 m width and 43 m height (the latter took into account the exhaust fumes of the steam locomotives). The stone reception building with its eclectic style and its 75 m high dome was popularly known as the "railway cathedral". The roof of iron and glass allows an abundance of light into the main terminal.
In the mid-20th century, the station was structurally in very poor condition and almost deconstructed; the dome threatened to collapse and in 1957 a falling stone even hit a passenger. The building, however, received monument protection and was extensively renovated in 1993.
After the old building was no longer able to accommodate the increasing number of trains, the building was redesigned; the train service is now handled on four levels, at the same time preserving the historical reception building.
The Antwerp train station is today considered one of the most beautiful in the world.