Interstate 81 in Pennsylvania

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This article is about the section of Interstate 81 in Pennsylvania. For the entire route, see Interstate 81.

Interstate 81 marker

Interstate 81
American Legion Memorial Highway
Route information
Maintained by PennDOT
Length: 232.63 mi[1] (374.38 km)
Major junctions
South end: I-81 at the MD state line near Hagerstown
  US 30 in Chambersburg
US 11 to I-76 / Penna Turnpike in Carlisle
PA 581 near Camp Hill
US 22 / US 322 in Harrisburg
I-83 / US 322 in Colonial Park
I-78 in Lickdale
I-80 near Hazleton
PA 309 in Wilkes-Barre
I-84 / I-380 / US 6 near Scranton
I-476 / Penna Turnpike NE Extension / US 6 near Scranton
North end: I-81 at the NY state line near Hallstead
Highway system
PA 80 PA 81

Interstate 81 is an 854.89-mile-long (1,375.81 km) north–south Interstate Highway, stretching from Dandridge, Tennessee to Fisher's Landing, New York at the United States/Canadian border. In the state of Pennsylvania, I-81 runs for 232.63 miles (374.38 km) from the Maryland state line near Greencastle to the New York state line near Hallstead and is called the American Legion Memorial Highway.

Route description[edit]

Maryland to Interstate 78[edit]

I-81 northbound at western terminus of I-78

I-81 enters Pennsylvania at the Maryland state line about 13 miles (21 km) south of Chambersburg. In Chambersburg at mile marker 16, it meets with a major highway; U.S. Route 30 (the Chambersburg Pike to Gettysburg). About a mile north of Carlisle at exit 52, it meets with U.S. Route 11, which takes passengers to the Pennsylvania Turnpike/ Interstate 76, since I-81 has no direct interchange with I-76. The stretch of US 11 connecting I-81 to I-76 is known locally as the "Miracle Mile" since it contains plenty of traveler services including restaurants, gas stations, lodging, truck stops, shops, etc.[2] From here, I-81 travels in an almost precisely east–west direction for the next 37 miles (until exit 89). At mile marker 59, it has an interchange with the western terminus of Pennsylvania Route 581. I-81 becomes the Capital Beltway from exit 59 to exit 70. As passengers approach exit 67, a major complex interchange is seen. The interchange consists of U.S. Route 22 and U.S. Route 322; U.S. Route 322 merges with Interstate 81. Exit 70 is the eastern terminus of the US 322 concurrency and the northern terminus of Interstate 83, and is located in Colonial Park. For the entire segment between the Mason-Dixon Line and Interstate 78, I-81 runs through the Great Valley. North of Harrisburg between Interstate 83/U.S. Route 322 and Interstate 78, the highway passes near Hershey and Fort Indiantown Gap.

Interstate 78 to New York State[edit]

I-81 northbound approaching Central Scranton Expressway in Scranton

At mile marker 89, I-81 meets the western terminus of I-78; I-78 picks up the eastward route through the Great Valley and heads toward Allentown and New York City, while I-81 turns back northward, cutting through the Blue Mountain at Swatara Gap. From mile marker 141 to mile marker 146; I-81 passes near the city of Hazleton. At exit 151, I-81 meets a major interstate; Interstate 80. As motorists enter Wilkes-Barre at mile marker 165, Interstate 81 merges with a major Pennsylvania route for 5 miles (8.0 km); Pennsylvania Route 309. At exit 175, I-81 meets with Pennsylvania Route 315, which will lead passengers to the Northeast Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. In Scranton at mile marker 185, there is a short freeway called the Central Scranton Expressway which will lead passengers into downtown Scranton. At mile marker 187, I-81 is at the Throop Dunmore Interchange which consists of Interstate 84, Interstate 380, and U.S. Route 6. US 6 merges with I-81 for 7 miles (11 km) from mile marker 187 to mile marker 194. At mile marker 194, is the northern terminus of Interstate 476 which is the north east extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The last exit in Pennsylvania is exit 230 which is Pennsylvania Route 171 near Hallstead. 4 miles (6.4 km) north of exit 230, passengers have entered the state of New York.

History[edit]

On May 9, 2013, a tanker crashed and caught fire at the interchange between I-81 and US 22/US 322 in Harrisburg. The fire damaged the bridges carrying westbound US 22/US 322 and a ramp over I-81. At least one of those bridges, carrying US 22 eastbound over I-81 and several ramps, and possibly another, the ramp carrying traffic from I-81 northbound to US 22/US 322 westbound, will have to be demolished and replaced. The fire resulted in about ten miles of I-81 being closed in both directions, with traffic being diverted along the southern portion of the Capital Beltway.[3][4] The highway would not be fully reopened to traffic until the evening of May 13.[5]

Exit list[edit]

County Location mi km Old exit New exit Destinations Notes
Maryland state line 0.00 0.00 I-81 south continues into Maryland
Franklin Antrim Township 0.0 0.0 1 1 PA 163 (Mason-Dixon Road) Interchange straddles Maryland state line. Southbound ramps are in Maryland, and northbound ramps are in Pennsylvania.
2.5 4.0 2 3 US 11 (Molly Pitcher Highway) No access from northbound US 11 to southbound I-81
Greencastle 4.8 7.7 3 5 PA 16 – Greencastle, Waynesboro, Mercersburg
Guilford Township 9.7 15.6 4 10 PA 914 – Marion
Chambersburg 14.0 22.5 5 14 PA 316 (Wayne Avenue) – Waynesboro
15.6 25.1 6 16 US 30 (Lincoln Way) – Gettysburg, Chambersburg
16.7 26.9 17 Walker Road Serves Norland Avenue and Wilson College
Greene Township 19.8 31.9 8 20 PA 997 – Scotland Serves Penn State Mont Alto and Letterkenny Army Depot
Southampton Township 24.1 38.8 9 24 PA 696 (Fayette Street)
Cumberland Southampton Township 28.4 45.7 10 29 PA 174 (King Street) – Shippensburg Airport, Shippensburg University
Penn Township 36.8 59.2 11 37 PA 233 – Newville Park and Ride Lot
Carlisle 43.9 70.7 12 44 PA 465 – Plainfield Serves Carlisle Fairgrounds
45.5 73.2 13 45 College Street Serves Dickinson College and Penn State Dickinson School of Law
46.4 74.7 14 47 PA 34 (Hanover Street) U.S. Army War College; split into exits 47A (south) and 47B (north) westbound
47.9 77.1 15 48 PA 74 (York Road) Northbound exit and southbound entrance
48.4 77.9 16 49 PA 641 (High Street) Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Middlesex Township 51.5 82.9 17 52 US 11 to I-76 / Penna Turnpike – New Kingstown, Middlesex
Silver Spring Township 56.7 91.2 18 57 PA 114 – Mechanicsburg
Hampden Township 59.0 95.0 19 59 PA 581 east (Harrisburg Expressway) / US 11 – Camp Hill South end of Capital Beltway overlap
60.7 97.7 20 61 PA 944 (Wertzville Road)
64.6 104.0 21 65 US 11 / US 15 – Enola, Marysville
Susquehanna River 65.3 105.1 George N. Wade Memorial Bridge
Dauphin Harrisburg 65.8 105.9 22 66 Front Street — Downtown Harrisburg Serves Amtrak terminal
67.0 107.8 23E 67A US 22 east (Cameron Street) / PA 230 east Serves Harrisburg Area Community College
67.0 107.8 23W 67B US 22 west / US 322 west – Lewistown, State College South end of concurrency with US 322
68.7 110.6 24 69 Progress Avenue Serves Widener University
69.6 112.0 70 I-83 south / US 322 east to Penna Turnpike – Hershey, York North end of US 322 / Capital Beltway overlap
Lower Paxton Township 72.3 116.4 26 72 To US 22 – Paxtonia, Linglestown Split into exits 72A (Paxtonia to US 22) and 72B (Linglestown) northbound
West Hanover Township 76.6 123.3 27 77 PA 39 – Manada Hill, Hershey
80.3 129.2 28 80 PA 743 – Grantville, Hershey
Lebanon East Hanover Township 85.1 137.0 29 85 PA 934 south – Annville, Fort Indiantown Gap Split into exits 85A (south) and 85B (north) northbound; Serves Lebanon Valley College
88.5 142.4 89 I-78 east – Allentown
90.1 145.0 30 90 PA 72 – Lebanon
Schuylkill Pine Grove Township 99.3 159.8 31 100 PA 443 – Pine Grove
Tremont Township 104.1 167.5 32 104 PA 125 – Ravine
Frailey Township 106.6 171.6 33 107 US 209 – Tremont, Tower City
111.3 179.1 34 112 PA 25 – Hegins
Foster Township 115.9 186.5 35 116 PA 901 – Minersville, Mount Carmel
Butler Township 118.4 190.5 35A 119 Highridge Park Road – Heckscherville, Gordon Schuylkill Highridge Business Park
Frackville 123.7 199.1 36 124 PA 61 – Saint Clair, Frackville, Pottsville, Shamokin Split into exits 124A (south) and 124B (north)
Mahanoy Township 130.7 210.3 37 131 PA 54 – Hometown, Mahanoy City, Shenandoah Split into exits 131A (east) and 131B (west)
Delano Township 133.5 214.8 38 134 Delano
Kline Township 137.6 221.4 39 138 PA 309 – McAdoo, Tamaqua
Luzerne Hazle Township 141.1 227.1 39A 141 PA 424 / PA 309 – Hazleton
142.5 229.3 40 143 PA 924 – Hazleton PA 924, nicknamed the "Can Do Expressway," serves the Humboldt Industrial Park
Sugarloaf Township 145.2 233.7 41 145 PA 93 – West Hazleton Serves Penn State Hazleton
Butler Township 150.5 242.2 151 I-80 – Bloomsburg, Stroudsburg Split into exits 151A (east) and 151B (west)
Dorrance Township 154.2 248.2 42 155 Dorrance
Nuangola 158.7 255.4 43 159 Nuangola
Hanover Township 163.9 263.8 44 164 PA 29 north (South Cross Valley Expressway) – Nanticoke Serves Luzerne County Community College
Wilkes-Barre 164.7 265.1 45 165
PA 309 south / PA 309 Bus. – Wilkes-Barre, Mountain Top
167.9 270.2 46 168 Highland Park Boulevard — Wilkes-Barre Serves Mohegan Sun Arena
169.8 273.3 47 170 PA 115 east / PA 309 north (North Cross Valley Expressway) – Bear Creek, Wilkes-Barre, King's College Split into exits 170A (PA 115) and 170B (PA 309).
Pittston Township 174.9 281.5 48 175 PA 315 to I-476 / Penna Turnpike NE Extension – Pittston, Dupont
Avoca 177.5 285.7 49 178 PA 315 – Avoca, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport
Lackawanna Moosic 179.2 288.4 50 180 US 11 / PA 502 – Moosic No access from southbound I-81 to northbound US 11
Scranton 181.5 292.1 51 182 Montage Mountain Road, Davis Street Access to PNC Field and Snö Mountain ski area
183.9 296.0 52 184 To PA 307 (River Street) No southbound exit
184.2 296.4 52 184 PA 307 (Moosic Street) Southbound only exit
184.3 296.6 53 185 Central Scranton Expressway
Dunmore 186.7 300.5 54 186 Drinker Street Northbound exit and southbound entrance
187.1 301.1 187 I-84 east to I-380 south / US 6 east – Milford, Mount Pocono, Carbondale Throop Dunmore Interchange; South end of US 6 overlap
188.1 302.7 55 188 PA 347 – Throop, Dunmore Access to Penn State Worthington Scranton and Marywood University
Scranton 189.8 305.5 56 190 Main Avenue – Dickson City
191.0 307.4 57 191
US 6 Bus. / US 11 (North Scranton Expressway) – Dickson City, North Scranton
Split into exits 191A (US 6 Bus.) and 191B (US 11)
South Abington Township 193.4 311.2 58 194 US 6 west / US 11 south / I-476 / Penna Turnpike NE Extension – Clarks Summit North end of US 6 overlap; Clarks Summit exit & northern terminus of Penna. Tpk. Northeast Extension
Scott Township 197.2 317.4 59 197 PA 632 – Waverly
198.8 319.9 60 199 PA 524 – Scott
200.5 322.7 61 201 PA 438 – East Benton
Benton Township 201.6 324.4 62 202 PA 107 – Fleetville, Tompkinsville
Susquehanna Lenox Township 206.0 331.5 63 206 PA 374 – Glenwood, Lenoxville
211.1 339.7 64 211 PA 106 – Lenox Northbound exit and southbound entrance
211.4 340.2 64 211 PA 92 – Lenox Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Harford Township 216.6 348.6 65 217 PA 547 – Harford
New Milford Township 219.3 352.9 66 219 PA 848 – Gibson
New Milford 223.5 359.7 67 223 PA 492 – New Milford, Lakeside
Hallstead 230.4 370.8 68 230 PA 171 – Great Bend, Susquehanna
New York state line 232.63 374.38 I-81 north continues into New York
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Route Log - Main Routes of the Eisenhower National System Of Interstate and Defense Highways - Table 1". Federal Highway Administration. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  2. ^ Miracle Mile, Carlisle, PA
  3. ^ "Governor: 'No clear timetable' for I-81 repairs". Lancaster, PA: WGAL-TV. May 9, 2013. Retrieved May 9, 2013. 
  4. ^ Heidenreich, Sari. "PennDOT updates road closures following tanker fire". ABC 27 WHTM. Retrieved 10 May 2013. 
  5. ^ Snyder, Myles. "PennDOT Begins Reopening of I-81". ABC 27 WHTM. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 

External links[edit]

Route map: Bing

Interstate 81
Previous state:
Maryland
Pennsylvania Next state:
New York