In Southern West Virginia, Abandoned Rail Lines Emerge As New Tourism Opportunity

Photo: www.facebook.com/railstotrails/

Hey southern West Virginia! Does your community have abandoned rail lines?

Well, now might be the time to look at convert those unused rails into valuable recreation and tourism assets.

And, if you are already pursuing a rail-trail plan, now is also the perfect time to connect with other people in southern West Virginia to share ideas and information, and explore the possibility of a connected rail-trail network.

Rail-trails are an available and affordable way to diversify the local economy, build communities and improve health.

A new working group is looking to see if there is interest in forming a southern West Virginia rail-trail organization, and they have a survey that you need to take. Here’s the survey link: https://goo.gl/forms/Ta4gvrVzRcbC3uTv1

They are looking for partners across the more than 13 counties of southern West Virginia that are interested in building a vibrant network of folks who care about trails, are building trails, and will advocate for trails.

Rail-trails are an available and affordable way to diversify the local economy,  build communities and improve health.

The decline of coal will result in the discontinued use of numerous railroad corridors in southern West Virginia, providing a great opportunity to preserve our railroading and coal mining heritage.

The Industrial Heartland Trail Coalition, which extends into northern West Virginia, illustrates how building extensive networks can enhance trail acquisition, development, and promotion. Working collaboratively, rather than competitively, across southern West Virginia will be more productive and will encourage shared resources and collective marketing.

Please take this simple first step by filling out the short survey: https://goo.gl/forms/Ta4gvrVzRcbC3uTv1

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