West Fairview is located on the eastern edge of Cumberland County and East Pennsboro Township at 40.273538° North, 76.916346° West (40.273538, -76.916346). It is on the west shore of the Susquehanna River facing Harrisburg, the state capital. It occupies a hilly peninsula of land between the Susquehanna to the east and Conodoguinet Creek to the south and west. U.S. Route 11/15 runs north-to-south through West Fairview, and Route 944 has its eastern terminus there on 11/15.
According to the United States Census Bureau, West Fairview has a total area of 0.34 square miles (0.87 km2), of which 0.32 square miles (0.83 km2) is land and 0.01 square miles (0.03 km2), or 3.76%, is water.
This former borough is by far the oldest settlement of East Pennsboro Township. The merger of the former borough with East Pennsboro Township was spearheaded by Mr. & Mrs. Leonard A. Portzline of West Fairview. The couple and other citizens were interested in the pursuit of greater cost-effectiveness, efficiency, and improvement in the delivery of local governmental services. The merger has become a model used by other communities across the state.