By Phil Kabler for The Charleston Gazette-Mail
PRICHARD, W.Va. — Once touted as a key economic development tool for southwestern and central West Virginia, the $32 million Heartland Intermodal Gateway is likely to shut down this fall, and go on the auction block within a year, Transportation Secretary Byrd White said Tuesday.
Members of the state Port Authority on Tuesday authorized White to negotiate a short-term contract with a private entity to operate the intermodal facility in the interim, with the intent of selling the 100-acre road-to-rail cargo transfer station at Prichard, Wayne County, at auction within a year.
White said that Norfolk Southern railroad, which donated much of the property for the intermodal facility, will stop service to it in October unless the railroad is able to reach a 15,000-container-a-year threshold. …