Lower Macungie Township
A Lower Macungie Township farm in August 2011
A Lower Macungie Township farm in August 2011
Official seal of Lower Macungie Township
Location of Lower Macungie Township in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania
Location of Lower Macungie Township in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania
Lower Macungie Twp is located in Pennsylvania
Lower Macungie Twp
Lower Macungie Twp
Location of Lower Macungie Township in Pennsylvania
Lower Macungie Twp is located in the United States
Lower Macungie Twp
Lower Macungie Twp
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 40°32′51″N 75°33′58″W / 40.54750°N 75.56611°W / 40.54750; -75.56611
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
CountyLehigh
Area
 • Township22.46 sq mi (58.18 km2)
 • Land22.35 sq mi (57.88 km2)
 • Water0.12 sq mi (0.30 km2)
Elevation
417 ft (127 m)
Population
 • Township32,426
 • Estimate 
(2020)[3]
31,964
 • Density1,430.35/sq mi (552.26/km2)
 • Metro
865,310 (US: 68th)
Time zoneUTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP Codes
18011, 18046, 18049, 18062, 18103, 18104, 18106, and 19539
Area code(s)610
FIPS code42-077-44952
GNIS feature ID1216689
Primary airportLehigh Valley International Airport
Major hospitalLehigh Valley Hospital–Cedar Crest
School districtEast Penn
Websitewww.lowermac.org

Lower Macungie Township is a township in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, United States. The township's population was 31,964 as of the 2020 census,[2] making it the second-largest population center in Lehigh County after Allentown and the third-largest population center in the Lehigh Valley metropolitan area after Allentown and Bethlehem.[4]

Lower Macungie Township is located 7.1 miles (11.4 km) southwest of Allentown 60.8 miles (97.8 km) northwest of Philadelphia, and 95.5 miles (153.7 km) west of New York City. The township is part of the Lehigh Valley, which had a population of 861,899 and was the third-largest populated metropolitan region in Pennsylvania and 68th-most populous metropolitan area in the U.S.. as of 2020.

History

Before European settlement, the area that now includes Lower Macungie Township was inhabited by the Lenape Indian tribe. They hunted here, and are known to have had a few small seasonal villages and jasper workshops close to streams and springs. Jasper from their quarries outside present-day Macungie and Vera Cruz was traded throughout North America.[5]

The name Macungie is derived from a Native American word meaning "bear swamp," or "place where bears feed." The early Pennsylvania German settlers took land that had been hunting grounds for the Lenni Lenape, adopting the Lenape name for the area. They cleared the scrub and forests, planted crops, raised livestock, and continually expanded their holdings. Most of what they produced fed their families and their hired and indentured servants, but some crops were grown for their cash value. Eventually they raised enough money to buy land warrants in Philadelphia from the proprietors, including William Penn's heirs.[5]

The Rodale Organic Gardening Experimental Farm, located in Lower Macungie Township, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1999.[6]

Geography

Lower Macungie Township is located in southern Lehigh County. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 22.5 square miles (58.2 km2), of which 22.4 square miles (57.9 km2) are land and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km2), or 0.40%, are water.[1] Little Lehigh Creek and Swabia Creek drain and wind through the township from sources in Berks and Lehigh counties. Swabia Creek joins Little Lehigh Creek in the township and the latter drains into the Lehigh River in Allentown.

South Mountain crosses the township's southern tier, just south of the boroughs of Alburtis and Macungie. Lower Macungie has a hot-summer humid continental climate (Dfa) and is in hardiness zone 6b. The average monthly temperature at Willow Lane Elementary School ranges from 29.2 °F (−1.6 °C) in January to 73.8 °F (23.2 °C) in July.[7]

Demographics

Historical population
CensusPop.Note
19708,814
198012,95847.0%
199016,87130.2%
200019,22013.9%
201030,63359.4%
202032,4265.9%
[8]

At the 2010 census, there were 30,633 people living in the township. The population was 84.6% Non-Hispanic White, 3.3% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American and Alaskan Native, 6.0% Asian, 1.6% from two or more race, and 1.6% from some other race. 5.0% of the population were Hispanic or Latino.[9]

At the 2000 census,[10] there were 19,220 people, 7,158 households and 5,611 families living in the township. The population density was 851.5 inhabitants per square mile (328.8/km2) There were 7,405 housing units at an average density of 328.1 per square mile (126.7/km2). The racial makeup of the township was 93.77% White, 0.58% African-American, 0.11% Native American, 4.31% Asian, 0.48% from other races, and 0.74% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.52% of the population.

There were 7,158 households, of which 34.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 70.2% were married couples living together, 6.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.6% were non-families. 18.2% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.65 and the average family size was 3.03.

Age distribution was 25.2% under the age of 18, 5.3% from 18 to 24, 26.1% from 25 to 44, 29.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 95.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.7 males. The median household income was $69,592, and the median family income was $78,695. Males had a median income of $60,325 versus $33,145 for females. The per capita income for the township was $30,202. About 1.3% of families and 2.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.1% of those under age 18 and 2.1% of those age 65 or over.

Industry

Lower Macungie Township is home to the primary manufacturing facilities of Mack Trucks, special effects manufacturer Smooth-On,[11][12] and Allen Organ Company.

Transportation

I-78 West and PA Route 309 North in Lower Macungie Township

As of 2022, there were 166.31 miles (267.65 km) of public roads in Lower Macungie Township, of which 3.60 miles (5.79 km) were maintained by the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission (PTC), 37.45 miles (60.27 km) were maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and 125.26 miles (201.59 km) were maintained by the township.[13]

The most prominent major highway serving Lower Macungie Township is Interstate 78, which briefly passes through the extreme northern tip of the township. Pennsylvania Route 309 becomes concurrent with I-78 there on its way southbound. Interstate 476 follows the Pennsylvania Turnpike's Northeast Extension along a northwest–southeast alignment across the northeastern part of the township; the nearest interchange is in South Whitehall Township.

Lower Macungie's main north-to-south local roads are Pennsylvania Route 100, Spring Creek Road, Willow Road, Brookside Road, and both Pennsylvania Route 29 and Cedar Crest Boulevard in the extreme east. Main east-to-west roads include U.S. Route 222, Lower Macungie Road, and Mountain Road in the south. Sauerkraut Lane is a residential route extending from Indian Creek Road just west of Emmaus four miles west to Route 100 and is being extended to Spring Creek Road north of Alburtis.

LANta buses serve the northern tier of the township on LANta's bus route 322. The Park and Ride lot in Wescosville provides intercity bus service.

Neighboring municipalities

Education

Further information: East Penn School District

Lower Macungie Township is served by the East Penn School District. Students in grades nine through 12 attend Emmaus High School in Emmaus. Middle school students attend Eyer Middle School or Lower Macungie Middle School, both located in Macungie. Two elementary schools, Wescosville and Willow Lane Elementary Schools and a private school for students with learning disabilities, Hillside School, are all located in Lower Macungie Township.

Notable people

References

  1. ^ a b "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 14, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Total Population: 2010 Census DEC Summary File 1 (P1), Lower Macungie township, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania". data.census.gov. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved October 20, 2020.
  3. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  4. ^ "The Lehigh Valley is growing, census numbers show," Lehigh Valley Live, August 23, 2021
  5. ^ a b "Lower Macungie Township". Archived from the original on October 15, 2013. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
  6. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  7. ^ Prism at Oregon State University
  8. ^ "Census 2020".
  9. ^ "Census.gov". Census.gov. Retrieved June 25, 2022.
  10. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  11. ^ Mack investing $70 million in Lower Macungie plant
  12. ^ "Special effects manufacturer gears up for move to Lower Macungie". May 15, 2014.
  13. ^ "Lower Macungie Township map" (PDF). PennDOT. Retrieved March 17, 2023.