Cannon Street two-way conversion starts Monday despite weather

Signs posted on Cannon Street explaining the conversion project (Source: Live 5)
Signs posted on Cannon Street explaining the conversion project (Source: Live 5)

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Contractors began work on converting Cannon Street to two-ways in downtown Charleston Monday despite rainy weather.

Workers could be seen around noon cleaning up debris in the two-block radius from President Street to Ashley Avenue, the focus for Monday's work according to a site worker.

The worker said the hope is to open that section of the road for two-way travel by 9 a.m. Tuesday. Work will then continue Tuesday up to Smith Street.

"I'm not excited about it because I have to back up into the street in order to get out of my driveway," said Alaine Mills, of Charleston.

Mills has lived on Cannon Street for several years.

She said while the conversion will make it easier for her to get home, in the long run, she's nervous about her safety.

"It's hard enough [to get out] with the fast traffic coming down [Cannon]," she said. "Now there's going to be two different ways of traffic going, so I'm kind of nervous about it."

It wasn't until the late afternoon that workers were finally able to get some paint down on the road. Arrows for the turning lanes onto Ashley Avenue were in place by 4:30 p.m. as well as the double solid line in that two-block section.

Cones and signs have also been placed along Cannon Street explaining what workers are doing.

Throughout construction, these cones will be in the center of the road to remind drivers about the conversion.

"It might cause some accidents or confusion, but it might be overall a good thing," said Molly Bina, of Charleston. "We'll just have to get used to it."

A small section of King Street will also see some changes to give drivers the option of turning onto Cannon Street. That's expected to happen at the end of the week.

Saturday, neighboring Spring Street officially opened to two-way traffic after a week of conversion work.

City of Charleston spokesman Jack O'Toole said the work on the project is weather dependent.

O'Toole added this project has been in the works since 1998 at the request of the citizens of the Cannonborough-Elliotborough neighborhood, as well as area businesses.

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