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SCDOT to widen portion of Clements Ferry Road from two to four lanes

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BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) -

A gridlock on Clements Ferry Road is part of the daily grind.

"It can be very frustrating, especially if you have to take a left to head towards 526 in the morning is a challenge, and it's also dangerous," explains Jason Hile, who lives off of Clements Ferry Road.

"Traffic is congested on the roadway, and the capacity of the roadway needs to be increased to handle that traffic and future traffic," says Tucker Creed, the SCDOT's assistant program manager for the Lowcountry.

Tuesday's hearing was a chance for the public to see the layout of the proposal, which will widen Clements Ferry Road from two lanes to four, between I-526 and Jack Primus Road. SCDOT officials say this is an environmentally sound option.

"We looked at wetlands," explains Creed. "We looked at threatening endangered species and so forth and evaluated the project's impact to those particular items."

While some residents agree an improvement is a must, they're worried about traffic from Jack Primus Road to Highway 41.

"You've got a bottleneck at 526 already," says Henry Skinner, who has lived in Berkeley County for 23 years. "Then you get to Jack Primus Road. Now, you're going to bring four lanes into two with a new school and development. We've got problems."

Skinner says he's all for development, but concerned the infrastructure will not be able to keep up with the rate of development the county will experience.

"They say it's going to be a long project. It's going to be 20 to 30 years. Some people say well you're going to be dead before that happens, but we've got children and grandchildren who want to live here."

According to SCDOT, construction will take two years and is expected to begin at the end of next year. The estimated cost of the project is $22 million.

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