This 6-mile long branch went between the Wilmington waterfront and New Castle, DE. It was built by the Pennsylvania Railroad in order to provide local service to customer along the route, and to provide a cutoff around the south side of Wilmington.
The Cutoff included a small branch line that accessed New Castle Airport, called the New Castle County Airport Line. It originally started out as its own line, owned by the Reading Railroad, and served as a trolley and frieght line that helped build northwest New Castle and the airport back in the early 1900s. It was an independent company having rights to operate on the Cutoff proper. Operations along this branch ceased in 1975.
Otherwise, the line was abandoned in two sections. The northern section was abandoned first in 1972. The southern part was abandoned in 1984; the tracks were removed in the mid-90s. The right-of-way is still noticeable and track actually lies under expanding neighborhoods.
A very small portion of the southern end of the line is utilized as the New Castle Heritage Trail.
Thanks to Joe Sharretts and Christian B. for contributing information about this route.