http://www.panarail.com/en/history/ The Panama Canal Railway is a railway line that runs parallel to the Panama Canal. The route stretches 47.6 miles across the Isthmus of Panama from Colón on the Atlantic side to Balboa on the Pacific side. It is operated by Panama Canal Railway Company. The infrastructure of this railroad was of vital importance for the construction of the Panama Canal. It has been in operation since 1855.