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Transportation in West Virginia facts for kids

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Transportation in West Virginia


The platform area of the Huntington Amtrak station as seen from the tracks.

While West Virginia was once criss-crossed with commercial and passenger railroad networks, the decline of the coal and timber industries, coupled with the rise of the automobile, led to a sharp drop in track mileage in the state. Many of the former railroad grades are used as trails for hiking and biking throughout the states numerous woodlands.

Today, West Virginia is serviced by two Amtrak lines: one that cuts through the southern portion of the state, including stops in Huntington and Charleston, and one that cuts through the state's Eastern Panhandle, including stops in Martinsburg and Harpers Ferry. The Eastern Panhandle is also serviced during the week by MARC's Brunswick commuter rail line, which terminates in Martinsburg. Commercial railroads still operate in the state, mainly hauling coal to inland ports such as Huntington-Tristate (the nation's largest inland port) and Pittsburgh.

Bridges and tunnels

As a mountainous state, bridges and tunnels play an important role in transportation in West Virginia. Notable bridges and tunnels include:

Rapid transit

  • Morgantown Personal Rapid Transit


Rivers with commercial barge traffic and docks in West Virginia include:

  • Ohio
  • Kanawha (a tributary of the Ohio)
  • Monongahela (the Mon and the Allegheny Rivers meet to form the Ohio in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
  • Little Kanawha (a tributary of the Ohio)
  • Big Sandy (a tributary of the Ohio)
  • Elk (a tributary of the Kanawha)
  • Pocatalico (a tributary of the Kanawha)
  • Mill Creek (a tributary of the Ohio)

Navigation Lock and Dams in West Virginia

  • On the Ohio
    • New Cumberland Locks and Dam
    • Pike Island Locks and Dam
    • Hannibal Locks and Dam
    • Willow Island Locks and Dam
    • Belleville Locks and Dam
    • Racine Locks and Dam
    • Robert C. Byrd Locks and Dam
USACE Winfield Lock West Virginia
Winfield Lock and Dam on the Kanawha River at Winfield, West Virginia
  • On the Kanawha
    • London Lock and Dam
    • Marmet Lock and Dam
    • Winfield Lock and Dam
  • On the Monogahela
    • Morgantown Lock and Dam
    • Hildebrand Lock and Dam
    • Opekiska Lock and Dam
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