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Company Starting Railroad Operations in W.Va.

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Trains will resume chugging along Norfolk Southern railroad tracks in West Virginia's Kanawha Valley after being mostly silent for months.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that a new short line railroad will operate a route from outside of Mullens in Wyoming County, through the Kanawha Valley, and on to Columbus, Ohio.

In February, as part of system-wide cost-cutting efforts, Norfolk Southern suspended operations on most of the Ohio portion of the route. While the portion of track through West Virginia technically remained open, traffic on the line plummeted.

That's when Watco Companies stepped in, leasing the 309 miles of rail line and creating the Kanawha River Railroad. Watco spokeswoman Tracie VanBecelaere says the Kanawha River Railroad will be Watco's 36th short line railroad and its first in West Virginia.

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