Interstate 81 in Pennsylvania

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This article is about the section of Interstate 81 in Pennsylvania. For the entire length of the highway, 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. Tpk. 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. Tpk. NE Ext / 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 Mile km Exit Destinations Notes
Maryland state line 0.00 0.00 I‑81 south continues into Maryland
Franklin Antrim Township 1 PA 163 (Mason-Dixon Road) Interchange straddles Maryland state line. Southbound ramps are in Maryland, and northbound ramps are in Pennsylvania.
3 US 11 (Molly Pitcher Highway) No access from northbound US 11 to southbound I-81
Greencastle 5 PA 16 – Greencastle, Waynesboro, Mercersburg
Guilford Township 10 PA 914 – Marion
Chambersburg 14 PA 316 (Wayne Avenue) – Waynesboro
16 US 30 (Lincoln Way) – Gettysburg, Chambersburg
17 Walker Road Serves Norland Avenue and Wilson College
Greene Township 20 PA 997 – Scotland Serves Penn State Mont Alto and Letterkenny Army Depot
Southampton Township 24 PA 696 (Fayette Street)
Cumberland Southampton Township 29 PA 174 (King Street) – Shippensburg Airport, Shippensburg University
Penn Township 37 PA 233 – Newville Park and Ride Lot
Carlisle 44 PA 465 – Plainfield Serves Carlisle Fairgrounds
45 College Street Serves Dickinson College and Penn State Dickinson School of Law
47 PA 34 (Hanover Street) U.S. Army War College; split into exits 47A (south) and 47B (north) westbound
48 PA 74 (York Road) Northbound exit and southbound entrance
49 PA 641 (High Street) Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Middlesex Township 52 US 11 to I-76 / Penna. Tpk. – New Kingstown, Middlesex
Silver Spring Township 57 PA 114 – Mechanicsburg
Hampden Township 59 PA 581 east (Harrisburg Expressway) / US 11 – Camp Hill South end of Capital Beltway overlap
61 PA 944 (Wertzville Road)
65 US 11 / US 15 – Enola, Marysville
Susquehanna River George N. Wade Memorial Bridge
Dauphin Harrisburg 66 Front Street — Downtown Harrisburg Serves Amtrak terminal
67A US 22 east (Cameron Street) / PA 230 east Serves Harrisburg Area Community College
67B US 22 west / US 322 west – Lewistown, State College South end of concurrency with US 322
69 Progress Avenue Serves Widener University
70 I-83 south / US 322 east to Penna. Tpk. – Hershey, York North end of US 322 / Capital Beltway overlap
Lower Paxton Township 72 To US 22 – Paxtonia, Linglestown Split into exits 72A (Paxtonia to US 22) and 72B (Linglestown) northbound
West Hanover Township 77 PA 39 – Manada Hill, Hershey
80 PA 743 – Grantville, Hershey
Lebanon East Hanover Township 85 PA 934 south – Annville, Fort Indiantown Gap Split into exits 85A (south) and 85B (north) northbound; Serves Lebanon Valley College
89 I-78 east – Allentown
90 PA 72 – Lebanon
Schuylkill Pine Grove Township 100 PA 443 – Pine Grove
Tremont Township 104 PA 125 – Ravine
Frailey Township 107 US 209 – Tremont, Tower City
112 PA 25 – Hegins
Foster Township 116 PA 901 – Minersville, Mount Carmel
Butler Township 119 Highridge Park Road – Heckscherville, Gordon Schuylkill Highridge Business Park
Frackville 124 PA 61 – Saint Clair, Frackville, Pottsville, Shamokin Split into exits 124A (south) and 124B (north)
Mahanoy Township 131 PA 54 – Hometown, Mahanoy City, Shenandoah Split into exits 131A (east) and 131B (west)
Delano Township 134 Delano
Kline Township 138 PA 309 – McAdoo, Tamaqua
Luzerne Hazle Township 141 PA 424 / PA 309 – Hazleton
143 PA 924 – Hazleton
Sugarloaf Township 145 PA 93 – West Hazleton Serves Penn State Hazleton
Butler Township 151 I-80 – Bloomsburg, Stroudsburg Split into exits 151A (east) and 151B (west)
Dorrance Township 155 Dorrance
Nuangola 159 Nuangola
Hanover Township 164 PA 29 north (South Cross Valley Expressway) – Nanticoke Serves Luzerne County Community College
Wilkes-Barre 165
PA 309 south / PA 309 Bus. – Wilkes-Barre, Mountain Top
168 Highland Park Boulevard — Wilkes-Barre Serves Mohegan Sun Arena
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 175 PA 315 to I-476 / Penna. Tpk. NE Ext – Pittston, Dupont
Avoca 178 PA 315 – Avoca, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport
Lackawanna Moosic 180 US 11 / PA 502 – Moosic No access from southbound I-81 to northbound US 11
Scranton 182 Montage Mountain Road, Davis Street Access to PNC Field and Snö Mountain ski area
184 To PA 307 (River Street) No southbound exit
184 PA 307 (Moosic Street) Southbound only exit
185 Central Scranton Expressway
Dunmore 186 Drinker Street Northbound exit and southbound entrance
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 PA 347 – Throop, Dunmore Access to Penn State Worthington Scranton and Marywood University
Scranton 190 Main Avenue – Dickson City
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 194 US 6 west / US 11 south / I-476 / Penna. Tpk. NE Ext – Clarks Summit North end of US 6 overlap; Clarks Summit exit & northern terminus of Penna. Tpk. Northeast Extension
Scott Township 197 PA 632 – Waverly
199 PA 524 – Scott Township
201 PA 438 – East Benton
Benton Township 202 PA 107 – Fleetville, Tompkinsville
Susquehanna Lenox Township 206 PA 374 – Glenwood, Lenoxville
211 PA 106 – Lenox Northbound exit and southbound entrance
211 PA 92 – Lenox Southbound exit and northbound entrance
Harford Township 217 PA 547 – Harford
New Milford Township 219 PA 848 – Gibson
New Milford 223 PA 492 – New Milford, Lakeside
Hallstead 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]

External links[edit]

Route map: Google / Bing

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