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VARP is a nonprofit corporation. Donations are tax-deductible.

Contact Us
Michael L. Testerman
P.O. Box 867
Richmond VA 23218
Steve Dunham
Chairman and webmaster
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Virginia Association of Railway Patrons

Modern Transportation for the Virginias

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Membership form

Virginians and West Virginians,

Help promote better train service and support preservation of existing train service. Join VARP. We’re the Virginia Association of Railway Patrons, and we’re working for modern transportation for the Virginias.

The Virginia Association of Railway Patrons, a nonprofit, tax-exempt association of railway services consumers and others, was founded in 1980 by a group of Virginians and West Virginians who had worked hard to combat the serious threat to railway passenger service in both Virginia and West Virginia in 1979.

By becoming a member of VARP, you will

  • help provide a foundation for citizens’ group action on behalf of better rail passenger and freight services in Virginia and West Virginia
  • be invited to attend meetings of other citizens interested in better rail services
  • be informed of Virginia and West Virginia rail service developments not usually covered in other rail news publications
  • become eligible to purchase a VARP membership pin

When you become a member of VARP, you will be supporting VARP in its efforts to

  • represent Virginia and West Virginia rail patrons
  • cover legislative sessions at the state and federal level
  • testify at legislative and administrative hearings on rail services issues
  • present the rail services consumers’ viewpoint to governments, railroads, and news services
  • promote and encourage new or improved light rail, mass transit, and commuter rail services in the Virginias
  • promote and encourage better rail freight service in the Virginias

No other form of transportation combines the railroad’s qualities of safety, mobility, economy, comfort, speed, and energy efficiency for passengers and freight.

Whether you travel by train or simply switch on an electric light bulb, you and your wallet are very much affected by decisions on rail transportation issues made in the halls of Congress, in the state legislatures, or by government agencies or corporate boards of the railroads. VARP is the only voice that represents consumers of rail services in both Virginia and West Virginia. Each additional member makes that voice stronger. Are you tired of people telling you to use other forms of transportation? The rail systems of Europe and Japan have become the standards by which quality transportation is judged. Shouldn’t we provide the same for ourselves? Do you want to see the economies of Virginia and West Virginia grow? Do you want more for your transportation dollar? Then join us now!

Join the effort to improve your train service. Here are some improvements that VARP advocates:

Northern Virginia

  • new, enhanced, and more frequent commuter rail service linking Alexandria, Arlington, and Washington with the Manassas and Fredericksburg areas and points beyond

Richmond Area

  • downtown Richmond intermodal passenger center
  • development of high-speed passenger service on the Washington-Richmond-Charlotte (NC) federally designated future high-speed rail corridor

Tidewater Area

  • frequent passenger train service between Richmond and Newport News and Norfolk, as well as light rail service between Norfolk and Virginia Beach

East-West Routes

  • new or increased service from Tidewater, Richmond/Petersburg, and Washington/Alexandria to Charlottesville, Lynchburg, Roanoke, and southwest Virginia, as well as restoration of direct passenger train service to West Virginia and the Midwest from Richmond and the Tidewater area

West Virginia

  • improvement of commuter rail service from the Northern Panhandle to Washington
  • at least twice-daily service from the Charleston and Huntington areas east and west, and improved east-west service through the Northern Panhandle

The Virginia Association of Railway Patrons is a nonprofit membership association duly incorporated under the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The charter of the association requires that all members subscribe to its purposes. A statement of the purposes as set forth in the charter will be sent with the initial membership material, and is available on this website. The Virginia Association of Railway Patrons works closely with, and most VARP members are members of, the National Association of Railroad Passengers, but VARP is a completely separate organization that advocates improved rail freight service as well as improved rail passenger service. Membership is open to all individuals or organizations who believe in better railway services for Virginia or West Virginia.

Membership form

Contact VARP

Michael Testerman, President
P.O. Box 867
Richmond VA 23218