The South Carolina Department of Transportation held a public hearing in North Charleston Tuesday night to get ideas about how to ease the flow of traffic around the new Boeing facility.
The new Boeing 787 facility in North Charleston is right off of Interstate 526, near the Interstate-26 merge. With an influx in Boeing employees traveling the highway, along with a recent boom in the North Charleston retail industry the past few years, traffic can get pretty heavy. Near the Boeing plant and I-526 is an outlet center, the North Charleston Coliseum and a line of new shopping centers.
SCDOT spokesman James Law says they held Tuesday’s public hearing to see what some options are that can be considered in the study.
“This is an 18-month study, and it started in March so we are very early in the process. The bad thing, as you know and everyone knows, is we are behind the eight-ball here and 18 months to do the study, where will the traffic be by then?” says Law.
Some options for traffic improvements, says Law, include mass transit or rail, as well as possibly extending the interstate more. I-526 currently has two lanes both ways.
Now that the state DOT has heard from the public, engineers will study each option for feasibility and hold another public meeting sometime next year.