Pennsylvania Route 873
|Maintained by PennDOT|
|Length:||8.860 mi (14.259 km)|
|Existed:||1966 – present|
|South end:||PA 309 in Schnecksville|
|PA 329 in Neffs|
|North end:||PA 248 in Lehigh Township|
Pennsylvania Route 873 (PA 873) is a north-south, two-lane road mainly located in northern Lehigh County, Pennsylvania with a small section in Northampton County. Its southern terminus is at PA 309 in Schnecksville. Its northern terminus is at PA 248 in the Lehigh Township hamlet of Weiders Crossing. The route runs through rural areas in northern Lehigh County, intersecting the western terminus of PA 329 in Neffs. PA 873 passes through Slatington as Main Street before it crosses the Lehigh River into Northampton County and immediately reaches its northern terminus south of Lehigh Gap in Blue Mountain.
The road between Schnecksville and Lehigh Gap was originally designated part of Legislative Route 163 in 1911. This section of road became part of U.S. Route 309 (US 309) when the U.S. Highway System was established in 1926. In the late 1920s, PA 22 and PA 130 were briefly marked concurrent with US 309 at different times. In the 1950s, US 309 was moved to a new alignment to the west, and part of PA 29 was designated onto the road between Schnecksville and Lehigh Gap. PA 873 was designated onto this road in the 1960s after PA 29 was split into two segments.
PA 873 begins at an intersection with PA 309 in the community of Schnecksville in North Whitehall Township, Lehigh County. From this intersection, the route heads north on a two-lane undivided road, passing a mix of homes and businesses. The road turns northeast and passes residences and fields before intersecting the western terminus of PA 329. From here, PA 873 continues north into the residential community of Neffs before curving northwest and entering Washington Township. In this area, the road passes through a mix of housing developments and farmland as it turns north and passes over I-476 (Pennsylvania Turnpike Northeast Extension). The route continues through rural areas of homes and woods prior to crossing into the borough of Slatington. Here, PA 873 becomes Main Street and is lined with residences before reaching the commercial downtown, where the road makes a sharp turn to the east. The route turns north onto Walnut Street and passes more businesses before running past a few homes a short distance to the west of Slatington Airport. PA 873 leaves Slatington for Washington Township again and runs through wooded areas with some residences. The route turns northeast, with the Appalachian Trail joining the road, and crosses the Lehigh River into Lehigh Township in Northampton County, where it passes over Norfolk Southern's Lehigh Line before ending at PA 248 at the base of Blue Mountain south of Lehigh Gap. The Appalachian Trail turns south onto PA 248 at this point.
When Pennsylvania first legislated routes in 1911, what is now PA 873 was incorporated as part of Legislative Route 163, which ran between Allentown and Mauch Chunk (present-day Jim Thorpe). With the creation of the U.S. Highway System in 1926, the section of road between Schnecksville and Lehigh Gap was designated as part of US 309, a route that ran from Philadelphia north to Wilkes-Barre. At this time, the entire road was paved. PA 22 was designated concurrent with US 309 on this stretch of road in 1927. A year later, PA 130 replaced the PA 22 designation along US 309. By 1930, the concurrent PA 130 designation was removed along this stretch of US 309, which intersected PA 29 in Schnecksville and PA 45 in Lehigh Gap. US 309 was shifted west to a new alignment between Allentown and Hazleton in the 1950s, and PA 29 was shifted east to follow the road running between Schnecksville and Lehigh Gap. In the 1960s, the PA 29 designation between Allentown and Wilkes-Barre was removed, splitting the route into two segments. As a result, PA 873 was designated onto the former alignment of PA 29 between PA 309 in Schnecksville and PA 248 in Lehigh Gap.
|Lehigh||North Whitehall Township||0.000||0.000||PA 309 – Allentown, Tamaqua, Hazleton|
|1.334||2.147||PA 329 east (Bellview Road) – Egypt|
|Northampton||Lehigh Township||8.860||14.259||PA 248 (Lehigh Drive) – Palmerton, Lehighton, Easton|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
- Bureau of Maintenance and Operations (January 2015). Roadway Management System Straight Line Diagrams (Report) (2015 ed.). Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. Retrieved June 30, 2015.
- Google (February 4, 2011). "overview of Pennsylvania Route 873" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved February 4, 2011.
- Lehigh County, Pennsylvania Highway Map (PDF) (Map). PennDOT. 2010. Retrieved February 4, 2011.
- Northampton County, Pennsylvania Highway Map (PDF) (Map). PennDOT. 2010. Retrieved February 4, 2011.
- Map of Pennsylvania Showing State Highways (PDF) (Map). Pennsylvania Department of Highways. 1911. Retrieved December 14, 2014.
- Pennsylvania Highway Map (eastern side) (Map). Gulf Oil. 1926. Retrieved December 26, 2007.
- Bureau of Public Roads & American Association of State Highway Officials (November 11, 1926). United States System of Highways Adopted for Uniform Marking by the American Association of State Highway Officials (Map). 1:7,000,000. Washington, DC: U.S. Geological Survey. OCLC 32889555. Retrieved November 7, 2013 – via University of North Texas Libraries.
- Pennsylvania Highway Map (Map). Pennsylvania Department of Highways. 1927. Retrieved December 26, 2007.
- Pennsylvania Highway Map (Philadelphia Metro) (Map). Gulf Oil. 1928. Retrieved November 8, 2007.
- Tourist Map of Pennsylvania (PDF) (Map). Pennsylvania Department of Highways. 1930. Retrieved January 1, 2014.
- Official Map of Pennsylvania (PDF) (Map). Pennsylvania Department of Highways. 1960. Retrieved December 17, 2014.
- Official Map of Pennsylvania (PDF) (Map). Pennsylvania Department of Highways. 1970. Retrieved December 17, 2014.
Route map: Google
- Media related to Pennsylvania Route 873 at Wikimedia Commons