Extension of left turns lanes onto Bees Ferry Road to help with traffic

WEST ASHLEY, SC (WCSC) - Drivers will see a change at a busy West Ashley intersection starting Friday morning and it's one that Charleston County and City officials hope will help with a major issue for residents.

County spokesman Shawn Smetana said there will be a nighttime lane closure Thursday between 7 p.m. and 6 a.m. on the northbound lanes of Glenn McConnell Parkway as workers resurface and re-stripe the pavement between the West Ashley Circle and Bees Ferry Road.

The change is to accommodate the heavy traffic that builds up on Glenn McConnell, specifically during rush hour.

"Anything to make the traffic flow go faster!" said Nicole Carter, of West Ashley.

No matter what time of day traffic always seems to back up at the intersection of Glenn McConnell and Bees Ferry Road, causing confusion and issues for drivers.

"They don't know how to merge properly and it just makes it difficult," said Emma Dixon, of Ravenel. "They just want to cut in, or they want to go all the way up and just push on it. It's just annoying."

The project will make minor changes to the lanes approaching Bees Ferry Road, transitioning it into dual left turn lanes so that a lane change to turn left onto Bees Ferry is not necessary.

"In the last seven years it's gotten gradually worse," Carter said. "It's really exciting to have some extended roads for the community in West Ashley."

For drivers who want to turn right from Glenn McConnell onto Bees Ferry Road, you'll have to drive in the right lane and then change lanes to the dedicated right turn lane. However, officials are urging drivers to take advantage of the West Ashley Circle.

"That would probably make the traffic move a little easier as long as people respect the road," Dixon said.

"Getting down here in the mornings is crazy," said Chris, of Atlanta, Georgia. "So I'm sure anything would assist that process."

"I don't know if it's going to make a dramatic difference," Carter added. "I guess we'll have to see how it goes. I can't see it making it worse."

The work is weather permitting, however, Smetana said it's only expected to last one night.

The project was requested by the City of Charleston and is being paid for by the Charleston County Transportation Sales Tax Allocation program.

Smetana added more improvements along Glenn McConnell Parkway are starting as a part of a new project recently approved which is part of the 2016 Transportation Sales Tax Referendum.

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