What is the Main Line



The setting for romantic tales, the site of historic happenings, and the home of many of the East Coast's oldest families.

The "Main Line" area dates back more than three hundred years when William Penn sold 40,000 acres to a group of Welsh Quakers for ten cents an acre! But the real development began as a convenient western extension of the City of Philadelphia, accessed easily by commuter rail lines. The flourishing Pennsylvania Railroad built these rail lines in the early 1900's. The Railroad owned much of the land surrounding the tracks, and encouraged the development of this picturesque environment.

Quaint train stations were built, and the luxury of country living along with convenience to the city lured wealthy Philadelphians out to rolling green fields and lush woods. With the establishment of shops, schools, and places of worship, residential development began to grow.

Today, the Main Line still offers the upscale lifestyle and country pleasures that marked its early years and contributes to a special and distinct quality of life. However, it has also matured into an independent community.


Although it maintains a strong link with Philadelphia, and many "Main Liners" commute to the city each day on the rail route known as the Paoli Local, the Main Line has the cultural, recreational and social opportunities which has made it a world of it own. The Main Line is centrally located within an easy drive of major urban centers such as New York City, Baltimore, and Washington DC. Since the communities are clustered along the railroad line, many residents can walk from their home to the suburban line and connect with Amtrak to travel to these nearby major cities. Recreational opportunities abound with easy access to the Pocono Mountains as well as the Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland shores.

Located in the heart of the Main Line, Lower Merion Township is a first ring suburban community bordering Philadelphia.The first stops on the commute home from a day at work in the city are Merion, Narberth, and Wynnewood. These communities are a blend of large, solid homes, stylish older apartment buildings, magnificent mansions, well-kept twins, and a diverse mix of residents. This mix results in culturally rich and interesting neighborhoods.


Merion is the home of one of the world's most intriguing art collections, the Barnes Foundation. Narberth has a unique small-town feeling, although it is only seven miles from the city.The block of neighborhood shops, markets and a movie theater serves as a common meeting ground for all of Narberth's residents. Wynnewood offers both the high-rise style of city living, appealing brick and stone homes of many styles and designs, several wonderful shopping areas and restaurants. Suburban Square, an upscale shopping area with seasonal events is only minutes away at the Ardmore stop. The Ardmore Farmer's Market is also located in the Square.

Suburban Square is beautiful in all seasons


Heading west, you might feel as though you've stepped onto a college campus. The residents of Haverford, Bryn Mawr, Rosemont, and Villanova have several of the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in their neighborhoods, including Villanova University, Haverford College, Bryn Mawr College, and Rosemont College.


The standard of living is high, for both the younger set and the established families. Just a couple of minutes drive towards the Schuylkill River, you'll discover the town of Gladwyne, with its glamorous homes and quaint Village district. Gourmet markets, quality shops, and cozy restaurants abound in these towns, and provide lots of choices for weekend enjoyment.

Additionally, the area has many local parks and playgrounds with excellent facilities. Public tennis courts are maintained by the township and offer township-sponsored tennis clinics, and a year-round recreation program is sponsored in cooperation with area schools.



Acres of parkland provide miles of bridle and footpaths for riding and hiking. The Main Line YMCA provides an excellent recreation and athletic program, also.

Once the home of the Lenni Lenape Indians, Radnor Township, including the stops of Radnor, St. Davids, and Wayne have executive neighborhoods mixed with a hometown feeling. Convenience marches alongside tradition in these neighborhoods, some of which date back to the late 1600's. As the home of many corporate headquarters, residents here often have the choice of the quick commute to the city or the possibility of gainful employment right in their own backyards.

Strafford, Devon, and Berwyn stand on the edge of Chester County, amongst the Philadelphia area's most rapidly growing counties.Devon is the site of the annual World-Class Devon Horse Show and Country Fair, an event that features the finest in equestrian talents from around the world.

These communities enjoy both the amenities of suburban living and a close proximity to the rolling hills of Valley Forge Park and the rural splendor that lies beyond.On July 4, 1976, the 200th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, Valley Forge became a National Historic Park. Not only is it enjoyed by locals hiking, kite flying, bicycling, and sledding; it is also a prime tourist destination. And “the shore” is less than a 2 hour drive.

The town of Paoli, located in Tredyffrin Township, was traditionally considered the last outpost of the Main Line. However, with the increased growth in the surrounding areas of Great Valley, Chester Springs, Charlestown Township, Malvern, Exton and West Chester, the "Main Line" feeling is reaching beyond its original rail lines.

As new communities continue to spring up, and older ones are rejuvenated, the Main Line will continue to flourish. It is rich with history, brimming with culture, and on the cutting edge of technology. The residents are classy, sophisticated, worldly and most of all friendly.

Here you can feast on the culinary delights of celebrated chefs, play public and private golf courses, shop the finest stores, enroll your children in outstanding schools and be treated at some of the top-rated hospitals in the nation.

The Main Line is an extraordinary place to call home.