Charleston businesses fuming over road congestion on 526 merge

VIDEO: 526

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC - Leroy Singleton is upset with South Carolina lawmakers who ended the regular legislative session without passing a long term funding plan to improve state roads.

"They aren't doing their job," he said. "The infrastructure and the companies that are coming [to Charleston] are not matching up real well. We are not building ahead. So we are always going to be behind unless something gets done."

"Right now we have fallen short," Bryan Derreberry said.

Derreberry is the President and CEO of the Charleston Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.

"Our business owners are extremely frustrated, our board is upset," he said.

Derreberry says state roads are not keeping up with the new business growth in the Lowcountry.

He says it is critical to build more roads in addition to fixing the ones we already have.

"A third of our state highways are in poor or mediocre condition. Half of our secondary roads are in poor or mediocre condition. And one out of five bridges in South Carolina are structurally deficit," he added.

Right now lawmakers are discussing one time funding that would pump-in between $150 million and $400 million to improve roads across the state.

But Derreberry says that's not nearly enough money.

He points to the 526 and I-26 merge in North Charleston, which he says needs to have more lanes, and be rerouted to ease congestion.

"Just to replace that would be $500 million," he said. "We wouldn't be able to take care of one interchange in the state of South Carolina with the money they will be allocating on a one time basis."