Abandoned & Out of Service Railroad Lines Map

Here's our map of abandoned and out-of-service railroad lines, where hopefully you can discover some abandoned railroad tracks near you! It is most accurate in North America, but we are adding new lines across the world almost every day. Know of some lines we don't have? Please help us out and Submit a line to the map!








This is a crowd-sourced, and thus continuously updated map, of abandoned railroad lines across the world, tourist trains and heritage railways, unbuilt railroads, and reactivated railroad lines. It is most accurate in North America, and least accurate everywhere else. This map is incomplete, and will almost certainly remain incomplete. Please provide your knowledge!

For the purposes of this map; the legal descriptions of railroad property, i.e: rail-banked, out of service, disused, mothballed and abandoned are ignored. An out-of-service line that is still owned by a railroad company would still appear on this map, as the point of the map is to show were trains no longer run, not its current legal status.

This map is owned and maintained by Andrew Grigg, any data gathered from this map should provide a link to the map, as well as a citation. This data is viewable free of charge. Any commercial use, or reproduce, of this data needs prior approval. Email railtrace91@gmail.com for inquiries.




Thank you!
© Forgotten Railways, Roads & Places, Andrew Grigg, 2021










Comments

  1. Thank you for doing such a great job in recording these lost rails.

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    1. Mark, thanks for the kind words. It is an ongoing process to add these corridors, and while I've done plenty myself for finding lines, I also have to thank all of those who have contributed and supported the map as well, as it would be much less full were it not for their contributions!

      Delete
  2. Any way to incorporate some of this information in https://www.openrailwaymap.org/ ?

    The Google Maps UI is a lot better in getting details, but the Open Railway Map lets others share in the work. ;-)

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  3. Hammy,

    Thanks for the comment. I love OpenRailwayMap, but the UI limitations are the exact reason why I continue updating this map, and have people email me their contributions to add to it.

    Abandoned rail lines are more than just that, there’s history here as well as appropriate links to more information than I or any other map could provide. Context is key!

    That said, this map will almost certainly never match the amount of content that ORW has. But at the same time, I would love to find a solution which allows users to upload information, and if another UI has a better system for that while allowing pertinent information to be displayed, I would be very interested in that!

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    Replies
    1. OpenRailwayMap's data comes directly from OpenStreetMap.org . It has a built-in editor. All you need to do to contribute is create an account and start tracing. Then tag the line with the name of the railroad, and tag it with railway=abandoned and you're done.

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  4. The NS line from just northeast of Clemmons NC to the Y in Winston-Salem has been out of service for a good many years, tracks and crossing signals still in place but not maintained. Similar situation with the Great Smokies line from the Nantahala Gorge to Murphy NC. Maintenance used to end at the runaround siding on the west end of the gorge, but now they're putting in a turntable about a mile west of there, for their steam engine. -- R. Hampton

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    1. R., Thanks for the information. I have added the Winston-Salem line to the map. Hope to be able to take it off someday. Please let me know if there's anything else you know of to add!

      Andrew

      Delete
  5. I have made a better map for the Cowichan Valley Trail- these two combined railway lines have videos of each trestle or bridge - Click on icons for distances between points, Click on pictures for video https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1mCmK4HHjFGmwLYfvAzmueEd6NfI&msa=0&spn=0.123099%2C0.363579&ll=48.69669265027417%2C-123.80961695000002&z=10

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  6. theres a lot missing in Portugal and Spain tho!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sotavento,

      Thanks for your comment. Indeed there is plenty missing in Spain, Portugal and around the world. If you know of a particular line not on the map, please send an email to railtrace91@gmail.com with information. Thanks!

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  7. Missing an important historic abandoned railline. The old C&O connection between Hampton, VA and Fort Monroe. On Fort Monroe was the original Mile Post 0 of the Chesapeake and Ohio. Zooming in on Fort Monroe on your Google Earth Map, the icon for the MP0 is marked. Follow East Mercury north offpost and you can still see remnants of the causeway over the Hampton Rive where E. Mercury and East Mellon Street split. It connected to the still used portion of rail you can see clearly near East King Street just south of I-64.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the comment, this line has since been added!

      Delete
  8. I live along the Historic Cheshire Rail Trail in NH - I am trying to save historic infrastructure and the rail trail for the public, which it belongs to. I have 2 fb pages, named 'Cheshire Rail Trail - Keene to Connecticut River' and "CT River-Cheshire Rail Trail' - they have petitions and many, many photos, videos, documents, deeds, maps, etc... Please check them out and help me save this old rail line for the people! Thank you, Patricia Rodrigues, 52 Old Route 12 North, Westmoreland, NH - my fb name is 'Pat Rod'

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  9. Three more suggestions, all spurs off of the Rock Island. One is the line running to Midlothian Country Club in Midlothian, Il, another is the line running from by the Oak Forest, IL train station to the OAK Forest Hospital grounds (a short length still exists by the station, and the rail bed is still visible on the grounds), and a spur to the DuPont gunpowder factory that blew up over a hundred years ago, near the hospital. The cutting is still visible in the forest preserve, as is the square of the buried factory foundation at 41.607558, -87.731575.

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    1. Thanks for the information! Added the Oak Forest Hospital spur. The Midlothian Country Club Railroad was already on the map, and I don't add spurs less than a mile in length to the map. Thanks! Andrew

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  10. Very cool database. The one between Kansas City and Lees Summit Missouri has the south seven miles converted to the Rock Island Trail (opened last year), with the northern remaining 11 miles under trail construction.

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  11. The Roswell Railroad ran from Chamblee GA to Roswell GA. It included a branch to Morgan Falls Dam as well. It was abandoned in the 1920’s

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    Replies
    1. Thank you! This line as well as the Morgan Falls branch has been added to the map!

      Delete
  12. I was wondering how I might be able to contribute. I live in Northern Minnesota and have some very old plat books that show some railroads from around 1900 that were only around for 20 years or so during the logging boom. The plat books show the railroads and on Google Maps they are visible yet. These railroads are quite obscure and I am sure few people living ever knew they existed.

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    Replies
    1. Hello,

      Please submit via email to railtrace91@gmail.com any lines you might have that aren't on the map! Thanks in advance for your contributions!

      Delete
  13. Concerning "name
    Woodville, IN to near Door Village, IN
    description
    ROW of the proposed Chicago – New York Electric Air Line Railroad. This particular stretch was built, but according to Mark Kiefer, there was never any activity on the line."

    That last line about no activity is not true. The line transported thousands on the weekends from LaPorte to Westville to an amusement park from 1908-11 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicago_%E2%80%93_New_York_Electric_Air_Line_Railroad

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for the clarification! The entry has been changed on the map. I am unsure of the right of way between present-day La Porte Municipal Airport and LaPorte itself but will update as further information comes to light. Thanks again!

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  14. There is a short line on this map that I am pretty sure was never there. Is this a correction you would be interested in? (Or at least investigating more...)

    I only noticed because I was looking at this map and following a line that is currently a dirt path on which I sometimes run. Then I saw (on this map) a branch line off it that I'd never noticed before. I tried to find trace of it in the real world but there's not the slightest evidence that I can see.. Not at any of the road crossings, no property lines on Google Maps, and not even vaguely recognizeable linear features whatsoever on the satellite view.

    But the part that I run on - just a short distance away has remnants everywhere, every crossing. Even beyond where the path ends. I'm wondering if maybe it was a mistake?

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    1. Joe, what line are you referring to?

      Lines on this map may have been abandoned for over 100 years, and unlike OpenRailwayMap, we specifically map out lines that don’t have any real-world trace for the history behind them.

      Of course it could also be a mistake as well, but until we know more, we cannot say.

      Delete
    2. The Line is in Massachusetts. It is a spur off the Narrow-gauge rail line that heads North from Bedford MA. I have run on that line (now it's a dirt trail) many times. Accordiing to this map, there is a spur that bears off to the right, just North of Route 3. The very first road it crosses is "Hattie Lane". It supposedly then crosses "Dolan Road", then the "Middlesex Turnpike", "Fardon St" "Glad Valley Road", "Boston Road" etc. etc. until it comes back almost back to the main line.

      The thing is, there is not the slightest bit of evidence of this spur at any crossing or on any satellite map. Literally nothing. Yet look at the main line and you'll see clear visual evidence at every single road crossing there is. Both on Google Street View and on satellite images.

      I'm really not trying to waste anybody's time. I hope I'm wrong. And being so familiar with this area, I was sort of excited to discover this new line. But I cannot find it anywhere, even when I go there in person.

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    3. Joe,

      The right of way you're referring to is the Bedford & Billerica Railroad, one of the earliest abandonments in Massachusetts. Its 2' narrow-gauge alignment was only active between 1877-79, which is why hardly any trace remains of it today. It was not a spur of the mainline, it was the mainline before the Boston, Lowell & Nashua Railroad rebuilt the right of way in 1885, which became the Boston & Maine Railroad.

      Additionally, there is a bit more visible on aerial imagery from 1938, the earliest of which is available on Historic Aerials. A lot of railroad history is no longer visible in the real world, which is part of why this project exists in the first place.

      Jim Haines sent us this email last year regarding the line. "When the B&M replaced the old narrow line with a standard line, they deviated to the west of Billerica Center because the grade was better. The narrow line went east of Billerica Center up the steeper grade of town hill.

      You can watch my video on the abandoned Billerica & Bedford railroad on my YouTube Channel (jph0917). The video title is "Abandoned Railroads of Massachusetts - Billerica & Bedford"." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcn93Y1Zh0U

      You can read more about it here: https://ngdiscussion.net/phorum/read.php?1,369943

      Thanks!

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    4. This is great stuff, thanks. Can't believe I missed that sign on Hattie road!

      Delete
  15. I honestly did not know that there are other people into this. Thank you so much. Here in Texas many rural towns are still laid out around the non-existent lines and stations.

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