Route 222 Plans Accelerating

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s the snippet of Berks County where time appears to stop, and progress means inching forward in a line of brake lights that doesn’t seem to end.

Drivers and public officials in Berks have complained for years that the northern part of Route 222 – particularly the 7-mile stretch between the so-called Road to Nowhere expressway in Ontelaunee Township and the start of the Kutztown bypass in Richmond Township – is a commuting nightmare.  It’s also a safety hazard and a roadblock to economic growth.

But that could all change if Pennsylvania’s coffers for road projects get a little fill-up, PennDOT says.

The agency has committed to making Route 222 a four-lane highway from Reading to Kutztown if legislators adopt Gov. Tom Corbett’s plan to boost transportation funds through increases in wholesale gasoline taxes and structural changes to PennDOT.

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Fee For Pennsylvania State Troopers On The Radar

English: Pennsylvania county map

English: Pennsylvania county map (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A crash occurs on Route 183 in Penn Township.  State troopers who usually respond in that area are tied up elsewhere.

What’s a police chief in the small neighboring borough of Bernville going to do?

“As soon as I hear about an incident I’m going to respond,” Chief Brian Thumm said.

He won’t ignore a call nearby just because it’s outside his borough in state police territory.

While that’s the right thing to do, Thumm said, Bernville taxpayers are picking up the cost.

He’d like to see neighboring municipalities join with Bernville in providing local police coverage.  If that’s not an option, he’d at least like to see municipalities that rely only on state police pay for the service.

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