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PennDOT Plans Changes to Rt. 412 Northbound Approach to Shimersville Road

PennDOT is planning to make some changes to its plans for Rt. 412 northbound as it approaches Shimersville Road in Bethlehem; a section of roadway just north of the Saucon Creek bridge that is still under heavy construction.

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Hellertown Road (Rt. 412) northbound traffic, as it approaches the Shimersville Road turn-off in Bethlehem (image date: August 2015)

Hellertown Road (Rt. 412) northbound traffic, as it approaches the Shimersville Road turn-off in Bethlehem (image date: August 2015)

PennDOT is planning to make some changes to its plans for Rt. 412 northbound as it approaches Shimersville Road in Bethlehem; a section of roadway just north of the Saucon Creek bridge that is still under heavy construction.

According to a June 6 email from PennDOT District 5-0 Asst. District Traffic and Operations Manager Thomas Walter, to Lower Saucon Township and Hellertown elected and other officials, a recent review of the approach has resulted in revisions to the original plans for the widened roadway.

“For the signing along the northbound Route 412 approach, we have determined that the following is needed,” Walter said:

Near the exit for Shimersville Road north from Rt. 412 north in Bethlehem (image date: August 2015)

Near the exit for Shimersville Road north from Rt. 412 north in Bethlehem (image date: August 2015)

  • On an overhead lane control signing mast arm, an overhead street name sign should be installed above a “Right Turn Only” sign which is over the right lane that takes motorists to Shimersville Road.
  • The “SIGNAL AHEAD” sign has been relocated to a location south of the Saucon Creek bridge to provide better visibility for the sign and additional advance notice for the traffic signal.
  • A 48 by 30-inch post-mounted lane control sign has been installed to augment the overhead lane control signing.
  • To provide additional traveler information for lane assignments to continue along Route 412 north, three route directional signing assemblies are to be installed. A sign assembly in the median at the approach will be oversized to provide greater visibility and importance to the sign, and two special “LEFT TWO LANES” layouts will be installed at the right side and median installations. The right side installations are standard size due to the required offset from the curb line and the limited amount of space between the curb and the sidewalk.

The revisions come after motorists and officials expressed concern about poor signage for the turnoff lane for Shimersville Road underneath the railroad trestle.

Shimersville Road is the primary northbound route for local traffic heading to Steel City, Freemansburg and other points to the north.

PennDOT has said it expects to complete the Route 412 widening project–which began in 2013–by later this year.

The point where Shimersville Road splits off from Rt. 412 in Bethlehem (image date: August 2015)

The point where Shimersville Road splits off from Rt. 412 in Bethlehem (image date: August 2015)

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About the author

Josh Popichak

Josh Popichak is the owner, publisher and editor of Saucon Source. A Lehigh Valley native, he's covered local news since 2005 and previously worked for Berks-Mont News and AOL/Patch. Contact him at josh@sauconsource.com.

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