According to toppharmacyschools, US 202 is a US Highway in the US state of Pennsylvania. The road forms a perimeter road along the west and north sides of the Philadelphia metropolitan area and typically runs about 15 to 25 miles from the city center, from Elam on the Delaware border to New Hope on the New Jersey border. The road is about 90 kilometers long, and part of it is a motorway.
US 202/322 at Newtown Square, in the Philadelphia suburbs.
The route begins west of Philadelphia at the Delaware border, not far north of Wilmington, and is called the Wilmington Pike. This section is a level 2×2 divided highway. At West Chester, the highway section begins as the West Chester Bypass. This section of the highway is about 30 kilometers long and has 2×3 lanes. At Exton you cross the US 30. US 202 turns east here and then parallels the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The area consists of forests with small residential areas everywhere. After Howellville, the highway has 2×4 lanes, one of the widest roads in the Philadelphia metropolitan area. At King of Prussia there is an interchange complex, first with US 422 and then with Interstate 76.
After this, the highway section also ends and the road continues as the four-lane DeKalb Pike and intersects Interstate 276. Some important connections are grade separated. At Norristown one crosses the Schuylkill River, after which US 202 has only one lane in each direction. One passes through the expanding northern suburban area of Philadelphia here. It crosses Interstate 476, but there is no connection with it. The US 202 is just one of the winding main roads here, a real grid patternis not there. At Doylestown, US 202 briefly forms a highway bypass. After that, the urban area becomes thinner, with suburbs scattered here and there. One then reaches New Hope, where there is a toll bridge over the Delaware River, also the border with New Jersey.
In 1932, a plan was drawn up for a parkway system in and around Philadelphia, similar to what Robert Moses was building around New York City. The plan also included a parkway from Valley Forge through Chester and Delaware County to the south, roughly along the route of today’s US 202. Without political heavyweight Moses, however, little took off in the decades that followed.
In 1964, a 100-mile highway from the Delaware border to the Delaware River at New Hope was proposed as an extreme bypass of Philadelphioa. This area was still rural at the time. The plan was called the “Piedmont Expressway”. Construction began at the Schuylkill Expressway in King of Prussia in 1965 and West Chester in 1966.
In 1967 the 10km section from West Goshen to West Whiteland opened and in 1969 an 8km section opened from Tredyffrin to Norristown. In 1972 the section opened from West Whiteland to Tredyffrin for seven miles and for a bit around Doylestown, a bit further to the northeast. By 1972, 20 miles of US 202 had been built as a highway, but it remained so for the next 30 years.
Over the years, plans have been put on the back burner due to environmental regulations and strong urban development in Montgomery and Bucks County. Studies were made in 2002 to convert US 202 in Delaware County to a semi-freeway, however, there are no plans for a full highway because they do not have the appropriate right-of-way for such a project. The widening of US 202 from 2×2 to 2×3 lanes around West Chester began in the 2000s and was completed in 2010. Beginning in 1998, a portion of US 202 parallel to the Pennsylvania Turnpike was widened to 2×3 lanes, completed in 2003.
In 2003 the section from Norristown to Doylestown was widened from 2 to 5 lanes, but this did not become a highway. There are no plans to convert the rest of US 202 into a highway. On December 3, 2012, a 2 to 4-lane new route between Montgomeryville and Doylestown opened as a level parkway. This is a remnant of Philadelphia’s originally planned highway bypass.
Between Montgomeryville and Doylestown, the existing US 202 handles more than 20,000 vehicles at one level, leading to chronic congestion. The explosive growth of the suburbs north of Philadelphia exacerbated this problem. Studies were conducted in 1968 to convert US 202 into a highway from King of Prussia to the New Jersey border at New Hope. In the 1980s, however, this plan was met with increasing opposition. Environmental studies were conducted in 1990, but in the mid-1990s plans for the Doylestown bypass were downsized from 17 kilometers to 14 kilometers. In 1998, this plan was approved by the FHWA. However, in 2004 this project was halted in order to construct a road with roundabouts as an alternative. In February 2005, another plan was presented to build a super two, a grade-separated road with one lane in each direction. This project was completed on December 3, 2012, but it is feared that this will not solve the traffic jams.
US 202 has gradually widened westward to 2×3 lanes from King of Prussia. In 2012, the widening to State Route 401 in East Whiteland was completed. Between 2013 and 2016, an additional 2 miles to the junction with US 30 at Exton was widened to 2×3 lanes. There was a space reservation in the central reservation for this, but artworks had to be adapted. This project was completed on August 12, 2016.