Delaware Route 273
|Maintained by DelDOT|
|Length:||12.67 mi (20.39 km)|
|West end:||MD 273 near Newark|
| DE 896 in Newark
DE 2 / DE 72 in Newark
DE 4 near Ogletown
I‑95 near Christiana
DE 7 near Christiana
DE 1 near Christiana
DE 37 in Pleasantville
US 13 / US 40 at Hares Corner
DE 141 in New Castle
|East end:||DE 9 in New Castle|
Delaware Route 273 (DE 273) is a state highway in New Castle County, Delaware. The route runs from Maryland Route 273 (MD 273) at the Maryland border near Newark east to DE 9 and DE 141 in New Castle. The route runs through suburban areas between Newark and New Castle as a four-lane divided highway, passing through Ogletown and Christiana. DE 273 intersects DE 896 in downtown Newark, DE 2/DE 72 on the eastern edge of Newark, DE 4 in Ogletown, Interstate 95 (I-95), DE 7, and DE 1 in Christiana, DE 37 in Pleasantville, and DE 58 and U.S. Route 13 (US 13)/US 40 in Hares Corner.
What is now DE 273 was originally built as a state highway in the 1920s and 1930s, with the portion east of Hares Corner becoming a part of US 40, which had crossed the Delaware River on a ferry between New Castle and Pennsville, New Jersey. DE 273 was designated by 1936 to connect the Maryland border near Newark to Hares Corner. In the 1950s, the route was extended to New Castle when US 40 was realigned to the Delaware Memorial Bridge. DE 273 was moved onto new alignments around Christiana in the 1980s and through Ogletown in the 1990s.
DE 273 begins at the Maryland border west of Newark, where it continues west into that state as MD 273. From the state line, the route heads southeast on two-lane undivided Nottingham Road, passing through wooded suburban neighborhoods as it enters Newark. DE 273 becomes West Main Street as it approaches the downtown area, intersecting the southbound direction of DE 896, at which point DE 273 forms a concurrency with southbound DE 896. The road crosses CSX's Philadelphia Subdivision and comes to an intersection with New London Road, which heads northwest as northbound DE 896, and South Main Street, which heads southwest as DE 896. At this point, DE 273 splits into the one-way pair of West Delaware Avenue eastbound and West Main Street westbound, with eastbound DE 273 briefly following one-way South Main Street southwest to get from West Main Street to West Delaware Avenue. The one-way pair, which carries two lanes in each direction, becomes concurrent with DE 896 in both directions until the South College Avenue intersection. DE 273 passes through the University of Delaware campus and continues through the commercial downtown as East Delaware Avenue eastbound and East Main Street westbound. Farther east, East Delaware Avenue shifts farther to the south of East Main Street, with the one-way streets passing between a residential neighborhood and coming to an intersection with DE 2/DE 72. At this point, eastbound DE 273 heads north with DE 72 on four-lane divided Library Avenue to rejoin westbound DE 273.
Past DE 2/DE 72, DE 273 leaves Newark and heads east on Ogletown Road, a five-lane road with a center left-turn lane that passes through commercial areas, soon becoming a four-lane divided highway. The road continues east and comes to a bridge over Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, curving south into wooded areas with some development. The route turns southeast and reaches an interchange with DE 4 in Ogletown. Past this interchange, DE 273 becomes Christiana Road and heads east through suburban residential neighborhoods with some businesses. The road heads southeast again as it comes to an interchange with I-95 (Delaware Turnpike). Following this, the route heads into more commercial areas and becomes the Christiana Bypass, bypassing the community of Christiana to the southwest. DE 273 heads south into wooded areas and crosses Old Baltimore Pike before curving east and coming to an intersection with DE 7. A short distance later, the road reaches an interchange with the DE 1 freeway.
Following this interchange, DE 273 becomes Christiana Road and heads through woods before entering areas of suburban homes and businesses, coming to an intersection with the southern terminus of DE 37 in Pleasantville. The route continues east through developed areas, intersecting the eastern terminus of DE 58 near the New Castle Airport. A short distance later, the road comes to an intersection with US 13/US 40 in commercial Hares Corner. Past this intersection, DE 273 becomes concurrent with DE 9 Truck and turns into two-lane undivided Frenchtown Road, heading east between business parks to the south and farm fields to the north. DE 273 comes to an intersection with DE 9 and DE 141 to the west of New Castle, where the route, along with DE 9 Truck, officially ends. Despite this, DE 273 signage continues east along DE 9, which heads east toward New Castle on Delaware Street. Before reaching the New Castle Historic District after a crossing of Norfolk Southern's New Castle Secondary, DE 9/DE 273 makes a left turn onto Ferry Cut Off Street. DE 273's signed eastern terminus is at Sixth Street near the Delaware River, where DE 9 turns northeast on Sixth Street to head toward Wilmington.
DE 273 has an annual average daily traffic count ranging from a high of 49,566 vehicles at the I-95 interchange to a low of 8,760 vehicles at the western edge of Newark. None of DE 273 is part of the National Highway System.
What is now DE 273 originally existed as a county road by 1920. By 1924, the portion of road through Newark was upgraded to a state highway while the road was paved between Hares Corner and New Castle. A year later, the section between Ogletown and Christiana was planned as a state highway while the section east of Basin Road was upgraded to a state highway. In 1930, the road between the Maryland border and Newark was built as a state highway, providing a shorter route to the Conowingo Dam in Maryland. By 1931, US 40 was designated to run on the portion of road between Hares Corner and New Castle, where it connected to a ferry across the Delaware River to Pennsville, New Jersey. Also by this time, all of present-day DE 273 was upgraded to a state highway except the portion of US 40 between Hares Corner and Basin Road. When Delaware first designated state highways by 1936, DE 273 was designated to run from the Maryland border west of Newark east to US 13 and US 40 in Hares Corner, roughly following its current alignment. In Newark, the route ran concurrent with DE 2. By 1952, US 40 was realigned to use the Delaware Memorial Bridge to cross the Delaware River, and DE 273 was extended east along the former alignment of US 40 to end at present-day DE 9 in New Castle. In 1956, DE 2 and DE 273 were routed onto the one-way pair of Delaware Avenue eastbound and Main Street westbound in downtown Newark following an eastward extension of Delaware Avenue to the intersection between DE 2 and DE 273 east of the city. By 1984, DE 9 was realigned to follow DE 273 east of the DE 141 intersection. DE 273 was realigned to bypass Christiana by 1985. DE 2 was routed to bypass Newark and DE 2 Bus. became concurrent with DE 273 through Newark by 1990. By 1997, DE 273 was moved to its current alignment in the Ogletown area, eliminating a short concurrency with DE 4 and involving the construction of an interchange with that route. The concurrent DE 2 Bus. designation was eliminated in 2013 as part of simplifying the route numbers in Newark.
The entire route is in New Castle County.
|Newark||0.00||0.00||MD 273 west (Telegraph Road)||Maryland state line, western terminus|
|1.73||2.78||DE 896 south (North Hillside Road)||Southbound direction of DE 896, west end of DE 896 southbound overlap|
|1.85||2.98||DE 896 (South Main Street/New London Road) to I‑95||East end of DE 896 southbound overlap, west end of DE 896 northbound overlap|
|2.04||3.28||DE 896 (South College Avenue)||Northbound direction of DE 896, east end of DE 896 northbound overlap|
|3.03||4.88||DE 72 south (Library Avenue)||West end of eastbound overlap with DE 72|
|3.23||5.20||DE 2 east / DE 72 north (Capitol Trail)||East end of eastbound overlap with DE 72|
|Ogletown||DE 4 (Ogletown Road) / Salem Church Road – South Newark, Churchmans Crossing||Interchange|
I‑95 / Delaware Turnpike – Delaware Memorial Bridge, Wilmington, Newark, Baltimore
|8.58||13.81||DE 7 (Main Street) – Christiana|
|DE 1 to US 13 – Churchmans Crossing, Dover||Interchange|
|Pleasantville||9.46||15.22||DE 37 north (Airport Road)|
|Hares Corner||10.96||17.64||DE 58 west (Churchmans Road)|
US 13 / US 40 / DE 9 Truck south (Dupont Highway)
|West end of DE 9 Truck overlap|
|New Castle||12.67||20.39|| DE 9 (Washington Street/Delaware Street)
DE 141 north (Basin Road)
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
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- Shannon, Josh (July 1, 2013). "A route to less clutter: DelDOT to consolidate Newark route numbers". Newark Post. Retrieved August 15, 2013.
- Media related to Delaware Route 273 at Wikimedia Commons