Work on a $30 million interchange project is bulldozing ahead in Palmer Twp., Northampton Co.
Crews have been out at the site for a few weeks, and change is already taking shape.
Next year, cars and trucks that rumble down Route 33 will have a few more options. Work is underway on a new interchange that will connect the highway with Tatamy Road.
"This has been on the radar for Palmer Township for over 20 years," explained David Colver, chairman of the Palmer Township Board of Supervisors.
He said not only are new ramps going in, but the two lane bridge above the highway will get a complete overhaul.
"It will be removed in its entirety," he said. "It will be a six lane bridge with an additional pedestrian walkway."
The bridge will also be about two feet higher above route 33 for extra safety. Colver said PennDOT will handle that part of the construction, with The Chrin Company bankrolling the rest.
"The bridge itself is about $6 million and the interchange portions are over $15 million."
It will connecting drivers to about 800 acres officials hope will become a fast-growing area. The industrial and commercial development is attracting some major companies.
"They already have three companies that have purchased land from them, one in Tatamy, two in Palmer that are doing projects and building in the area," Colver shared.
With new companies like Porsche, Kraft spin off Mondelez, and distribution company DCT-Industrial, comes new jobs. Nearly 5,500 are expected to be created.
"It's going to be a good thing for everybody out there, the community as a whole, revenue to the school district, and no new homes up here," Colver smiled.
In about two weeks, the bridge and Tatamy Road will be closed so crews can start working on that part of the project. Construction is set to be complete in 12 to 16 months.