Today, SCDOT officials, lawmakers and the public will gather for the first of five meetings to discuss the Interstate 526 expansion in Charleston. For visitors, I-526 takes them straight to the beach. For locals, it’s a daily commute to and from work on I-526. However, currently, the interstate just stops in West Ashley.
South Carolina Department of Transportation Project Manager David Kinard says discussion of the expansion project goes back a few decades.
“The original approval was actually 1972. So, it dates back to the days of the Charleston Interbelt Freeway,” says Kinard.
Kinard says they have looked at 39 different alternatives for how to complete the project that would extend the freeway from West Ashley to James and Johns Islands. Kinard says DOT’s alternative plan is:
“It is a parkway concept. What we found through this pretty expensive public involvement process is there is a lot of interest in having a softer, more gentle feel with the new roadway,” says Kinard.
Kinard says with this, what he calls “softer feel,” they will be able to provide a walkway for bicyclists and pedestrians. Next step– hear from the public about this concept.