Fruitville Pike, Temperance Hill Road, and Holly Tree Road Intersection Project


Project Summary
With development pressure surrounding the area, Penn Township sought improvements to the intersection of Holly Tree Road, Fruitville Pike, and Temperance Hill Road. The offset intersections, high truck volumes, and proximity of several residential buildings created not only a need for improvement, but also several challenges. Ultimately, the township engineer Traffic Planning and Design, advanced a design that includes signalization of the intersection with widening along Fruitville Pike (SR 0772) to provide a left turn lane between Holly Tree Road (T-566) and Temperance Hill Road and Holly Tree Road. This project was partly funded with State Transportation Improvement Plan Funding.

Our engineer provided the following services:
» Alternatives analysis
» Preparation of Highway Occupancy Permit ( OP) Plans
» Maintenance and Protection of Traffic Plans
» Erosion and Sediment Pollution Control Pla s
» Pavement Marking and Signing Plans
» Traffic Signal Plans
» Drainage design
» Right-of-way and property owner coordination
» Construction services

The intersection, in its original configuration, consisted of a single lane approach in all directions with the side street approaches offset by approximately 175 feet. At the intersections of Holly Tree Road and Fruitville Pike and Temperance Hill Road and Fruitville Pike, safe stopping sight distances were hindered by the existing roadway geometry as well as residential structures in close proximity of the road. The intersection lacked stormwater controls and the corner turning radii were deficient, resulting in truck traffic, particularly the large tractor-trailers, needing to encroach on opposing travel lanes to successfully navigate the intersection. In the original configuration, the intersection also had a pattern of rear end, head on, and angle crashes – particularly in the area between Holly Tree Road and Temperance Hill Road.

With the problems identified, starting in fall 2013, Penn Township and TPD developed a series of alternatives that would help alleviate the issues. Those alternatives included a roundabout, various signalized intersection options, and widening of Fruitville Pike and Temperance Hill Road for turning lanes and improved corner radii. Through a series of public meetings and discussions with the impacted property owners, the alternative selected included the following, which helped the Township achieve project goals and objectives while minimizing impacts to the surrounding residential properties:

» Widening of Fruitville Pike in between the two intersections to provide an eastbound dedicated left turn lane.
» Reprofiling of Fruitville Pike and Temperance Hill Road to maximize available sight distances.
» Constriction of improved shoulders to accommodate horse-drawn buggies.
» Stormwater conveyance systems.
» Signalization of the Holly Tree Road/Fruitville Pike/Temperance Hill Road intersection with the inclusion of ADA-compliant pedestrian facilities at the intersection.
» Existing residential accesses were modified or relocated to provide a safer access for those residents living close to the intersection, through coordination with PennDOT and property owners.

As part of the alternatives analysis, construction costs were an important consideration. With limited funding sources available, the Township began a multi-year effort of budgeting, working with nearby developers and pursuing grant opportunities. Over the course of the design and permitting, the Township was able to work with several developers
to fund a portion of the work, but large gaps in funding persisted. With a project fully designed and permitted, the Township turned to Lancaster County Planning Commission, who
themselves were also planning improvements to the area. Through that coordination, Lancaster County was able to allocate $1.49 million towards the construction of the project, effectively funding the full construction of roadway improvements. Given the scope of the roadway improvements to Fruitville Pike, which were occurring simultaneously with the design and permitting of the intersection improvements, the Northwestern Lancaster County Authority approached the Township about making use of the roadwayconstruction and associated detours to advance the installation of sanitary sewer infrastructure within Fruitville Pike. With a contractor mobilized and the roadway being excavated for stormwater improvements already, the Northwestern Lancaster County Authority was able to install a capped system for future expansion at a reduced cost. By doing the work together, the need to go back and disturb traffic for future expansion was also eliminated, saving commuters and nearby residents the frustrations of another construction project.

Providing a safe and efficient traffic network is vital for Penn Township. With increasing  population growth, not only in Penn Township but the surrounding area, the intersection of Holly Tree Road, Fruitville Pike, and Temperance Hill Road was experiencing increasing delays that became compounded by a deficient roadway geometry – culminating in a challenging intersection to navigate. Through the dedicated work of Penn Township staff and elected officials, the intersection design was right sized to minimize impacts to adjacent property owners, enhances safety and mobility through the intersection and accommodates future growth within the area. Road users will experience reduced travel times through the corridor, fuel consumption savings, and improved access to jobs, residences, commercial and recreational destinations. The project also provides a safe space for non-traditional modes of travel, including bicyclists, pedestrians, and horse-drawn vehicles.

For the residents along the corridor, with less congestion and reduced fuel consumption, the area will also experience a reduction in vehicle emissions, thereby improving air quality and overall quality of life for those who live along the corridor.

As previously noted, planning for these improvements began in 2013. Over the years, Penn Township met with residents, Lancaster County Planning Commission, and PennDOT to develop a series of improvements to address both the short- and long-term needs of the area. Township staff met with each resident in the area, outlining the issues and constraints and
requested feedback on how the design could be improved. As a result of those meetings, the design was modified with items such as green painted signal poles to blend into the area better, the inclusion of low growth/low maintenance plantings to reduce the need to mow grasses later, a safer alternative access to a nearby barn, and enhanced landscape/buffering. As previously mentioned, through cooperation with the Northwestern Lancaster County Authority, the Authority was able to make use of the work zones established for the roadway construction, and advanced a capped sanitary sewer installation earlier than initially anticipated. This resulted in a cost savings to the Authority and ultimately the ratepayers.

The project began in the Fall of 2013 with a series of alternatives to be considered. Preliminary engineering of the selected alternative began in 2015. Permitting and right-of-way acquisition was advanced through 2018 and permits were ultimately issued in February 2019. Construction funding, through PennDOT and Lancaster County, was identified in late 2020 and agreements were in place January 2021. The project bid in March 2021 and a construction contract was signed with Farhat Excavating, LLC. With all construction work complete, permits closed out in December 2023. Construction totaled $1.59 million, of which approximately $300,000 was related to the sanitary sewer installation and $1.29 million was related to the roadway improvements.

Follow this link to view drone footage of the improvements after they were open to traffic: