Rail-Trails are built and managed by a variety of organizations and agencies in West Virginia. In acquiring and building new rail-trail, this gives a range of options for any new rail-trails in the state to model.
City managed examples- Wheeling Heritage Trails, White Oak Rail-Trail, and Little Kanawha Connector Trail, managed by the city of Parkersburg
County managed examples- West Fork River Trail by Marion County Parks and Recreation Commission, Harrison North and South Rail-Trails, Harrison County, Lewis McManus Memorial Honor Trail, managed by Beckley Parks and Recreation Commission.
Bi-county managed example- Meadow River Trail is two-county effort to build and manage the planned 23-mile rail-trail. Fayette and Greenbrier Counties have created a two-county team to manage the rail-trail.
State managed examples- Greenbrier River Trail and North Bend Rail-Trail are both state parks and managed by the WV Division of Natural Resources. Both also have “friends of the trail” citizen groups to help with fundraising and maintenance.
Non-profit organization example- Mon River and Deckers Creek Rail-Trails (outside city limits) are managed by the Mon River Trails Conservancy and inside Morgantown city limits, they are managed by the Morgantown Board of Parks and Recreation Commission (BOPARC) with MRTC as an active partner.
The “Trail-Building Toolkit” is an interactive Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) website, and is a valuable resource for understanding the process of going from acquisition to designing and building rail-trails.
In addition, the RTC has free Reports to download that give specific guidance on rail-trail planning, development, and maintenance. http://www.railstotrails.org/resource-library/
OUTREACH– Build a broad range of community support. Learn more at http://www.railstotrails.org/build-trails/trail-building-toolbox/
Learn more about the process:
ACQUISITION– the process for learning about rail-trail possibilities and purchase
PLANNING / DESIGN– planning and design for the type of trail user
FUNDING– some sources for funding trails from purchase and build to maintenance.
TRAIL ENHANCEMENTS– some ways to best connect our rail-trails to trail towns and provide good access and amenities
IN THE WORKS– rail-trails in WV that are underway and have a team working on them.