Plan Context and Background
The State Rail Plan plays a key role in allowing the West Virginia Department of Transportation (WVDOT) and the West Virginia State Rail Authority (WVSRA) to achieve their directive of providing safe, effective and efficient movement of people, information and goods in West Virginia, enhancing the opportunity for people and communities to enjoy environmentally sensitive and economically sound development.
Given the importance of rail at every level of government within the State, as well as at the regional and federal levels, the governance and funding of rail is multifaceted; focused generally on policy, operations, and capital projects.
The 2020 West Virginia State Rail Plan establishes a long-term vision for the future of rail in the state, to move people and goods within, to, and from the Mountain State. The Plan is assembled based on past plans, engagement with stakeholders and the public, and technical and financial analysis. The State Rail Plan is a required document of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to receive federal rail funding. It also supports the delivery of the West Virginia Multi-Modal Plan (under development) and rail plan projects feed directly into the State Transportation Improvement Program, which was released in September 2019 and is updated on a biennial basis.
2013 State Rail Plan
The WVSRA completed its last State Rail Plan in 2013 – the first fully PRIIA (Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008) -compliant plan in the nation. Updates to state rail plans are required by the FRA, and since 2013, many changes have influenced freight and passenger rail in West Virginia, including the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act of 2015 (FAST Act) and FRA State Rail Plan Guidance released in 2013, after the WV State Rail Plan was completed. This includes changes in the state and national economy, demographics, changes across multiple levels of government, emerging innovations and technology, goods movement and passenger travel patterns, and changes to the local and global natural environment.
2020 Plan Vision Goals and Objectives
The vision statement is an aspirational description of what the project would like to achieve or accomplish as an outcome. It is intended to serve as a clear guide for choosing current and future goals and objectives. It is a definition of how you would like things to be. So, this is not a near-term milepost, but rather a far-off, future destination. It sets the tone and provides a North Star on the horizon to move toward.
2020 WVSRP Round 1 Engagement Summary
2020 WVSRP Round 2 Outreach
Rail Service Investment Plan
West Virginia’s unique geography led to railroads being developed following hillsides, creeks and rivers and tunneling through mountains to move cargo cross country. Conversely, the railroads helped shape West Virginia with rail lines being constructed to transport West Virginia coal and key towns centering among the crossroads of rail and waterways.
Current railroads can be broken up into three generalized areas of the state, North, South and East. Proposed projects are listed by these Rail Districts for ease of viewing. Go to our Get Involved Page
to learn more about the the 2020 State Rail Plan.