Norfolk Southern to increase speed of trains on Reading Line

36 crossings in Berks, Lehigh counties affected

NORFOLK, Va. - Norfolk Southern trains will soon be picking up speed through parts of Berks and Lehigh counties.

The company announced Wednesday that trains will increase their speeds along nearly 30 miles of its Reading Line.

The speed increase, which will take effect March 14, will include 36 public highway-rail grade crossings on the line from Muhlenberg Township to Allentown.

Train speed will increase from 50 miles per hour to 60 miles per hour at all but three of the crossings, where the speed will go from 45 miles per hour to 60 miles per hour.

The goal of the increase, officials said, is to enhance the efficiency of rail operations in Pennsylvania while improving the flow of vehicular traffic at the crossings.

Norfolk Southern said it has adjusted the warning devices at the crossings to properly activate when the faster trains approach. Those changes, officials said, involved installing new digital track circuitry to activate the signals.

The following crossings are changing from 50 miles per hour to 60 miles per hour:

  • Muhlenberg Township: Tuckerton Road
  • Blandon: Main Street, Wesner Road, Guldin Road, and Hill Road
  • Richmond Township: Keller Road
  • Fleetwood: Walnuttown Road, Richmond Street, Franklin Street, and Willow Street
  • Lyons: Deka Road, Kemp Street, Main Street, Bowers Road, and Kohler Road
  • Topton: Home Avenue, Main Street, Haas Street, Park Avenue, and Chestnut Street
  • Shamrock Station: Kennedy Avenue
  • Alburtis: Schlossburg Street, Smith Lane, Penn Avenue, Main Street, and Church Street
  • Macungie: Schoeneck Road, Gehman Road, and Main Street
  • Emmaus: Seventh Street, Sixth Street, Third Street, and Second Street

The following crossings are changing from 45 miles per hour to 60 miles per hour:

  • Emmaus: Kline's Lane and Harrison Street
  • Allentown: 12th and Vultee streets

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