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Plan to manage traffic in West Ashley during rapid growth - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Plan to manage traffic in West Ashley during rapid growth

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CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) -

West Ashley is the fastest growing area in the City of Charleston, according to Tim Keane, the city director of planning.

Several apartment complexes are going up while major improvements are being made to the roads.

Two of those complexes on being built as Bees Ferry Road in West Ashley is being widened.

Not too far away on Glenn McConnell Parkway, crews are working on the Springs at Essex Farms. Keane says the apartment complex will have 280 units.

Keane said, "The problem is you need more options to move around. Widening the streets is good but the best thing is to get additional connections and there'll be a couple of them built between Glenn McConnell and 17."

Keane says those secondary streets will make it easier to drive between Glenn McConnell Parkway, Bees Ferry Road and Highway 17.

The first connecting road will be finished by the end next year.

"Off of Wildcat around where West Ashley High School is, there's a connection through that neighborhood through Carolina Bay which will eventually get you to Highway 17," said Keane.

Keane says the second connection will go through the Essex subdivision from Glenn McConnell Parkway.

"That neighborhood will connect to Carolina Bay, so that will give you a second option between Glenn McConnell through Carolina Bay to 17."

Homes and apartments aren't the only reason more people are coming to this part of Charleston.

Keane said, "There tends to be parks getting built, there's going to be new shopping that's going to be built, there's going to be new offices that are built."

Keane says their vision is to reduce drive times and make it easier for people to get around.

According to Keane, another important addition coming soon will be a traffic light at Sanders Road and

Bees Ferry Road. Sanders Road serves as another way to get into the large Carolina Bay neighborhood.

The widening of Bees Ferry Road is expected to be done by the end of June.

Better quality, higher rent

According to city leaders, prices are high on new apartments and homes in West Ashley, because demand is high.

"The trend in West Ashley is towards higher quality buildings, higher rents are a part of that," said City of Charleston Director of Planning, Tim Keane.

Keane says the area with the most growth in the city is near three major roads, Glenn McConnell Parkway, Bees Ferry Road and Highway 17.

The new apartments being built in the area range anywhere from $900 to more than $1,500 a month.

Some of the homes can go anywhere from the upper $100,000's to more than $300,000.

Keane said, "People want to build high quality buildings, the designs are of much higher quality."

Keane says there are affordable choices as well.

"Those are large areas that have quite a variety of housing being built. Including some pretty modestly priced individual homes and more expensive houses."

Keane says people see West Ashley as a valuable place to live.

"It's close to things; it's a distinctive area, so there's a lot appreciation happening in West Ashley, no doubt about it," said Keane.

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