Bus route proposed to run from Summerville to Charleston

VIDEO: Bus route proposed to run from Summerville to Charleston

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Tri-County leaders unveiled the findings of their 15-month study on how to ease traffic from Summerville to Charleston.

The study, called I-26 Alt, was funded by the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments.

Last year, BCDCOG held a series of public meetings, gathering ideas for a public transit alternative to I-26. Some of the suggestions included a light rail, hybrid line or bus rapid transit line.

The study found that the most viable option would be a bus rapid transit, or BRT. The 23-mile corridor would be along Highway 78 from Summerville to Charleston.

"That would include park-and-ride lots, as well as some significant transit stations similar to the super stop that we have in North Charleston right now, and then having kind of a destination point at Line and Meeting street," BCDCOG Planning Director Kathryn Basha said.

Some BRT route would be on current roadways. In other areas, that have more room, separate bus lanes would be built.

It is anticipated that 38 people would get out of their cars each day and ride this instead. This selected plan would cost $360 million dollars.

BCDCOG is applying for a grant with the Federal Transit Administration. Basha says that if they get it, the FTA could cover 80 percent of the total project cost. BCDCOG is still trying to decide where the rest of that money would come from.

If all goes to plan, Basha says the project could be breaking ground in the next five years.

BCDCOG is going to continue to gather community feedback on the study's findings. Another public meeting is Wednesday evening in Summerville.

For more information about the study, visit I26ALT.org.

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