MOUNT PLEASANT, SC (WCSC) - The project to build a pedestrian bridge over Shem Creek is one month ahead of schedule, and it all comes as an expansion is made on the original plans.
Once complete, the bridge will connect the Coleman Boulevard sidewalk near Tavern and Table to the boardwalk near Mount Pleasant Seafood on the other side of the creek. It’ll be completely separated from traffic.
A new ADA-approved ramp is also being added. This will allow folks to get from the crossing on the Tavern and Table side of the creek to the restaurants and bars below. It’s something that wasn’t part of the original plans, but the owners of Tavern and Table just recently signed off on it.
They agreed that crews could tear down their shed that sat right next to the street. It once was home to the large sign bearing the restaurant’s name. This was the space needed to make the ramp a reality. As for the rest of the project, most of the concrete pilings are in the creek, handrails are starting to go up, and decking could be going down soon.
When it’s finished, there will be a viewing deck overlooking the creek, a covered section, and even a tree planted to provide some shade. It’s costing the town more than $3 million and could now open as early as the end of July.
It’s all part of the decade-long project to make enhancements to Shem Creek. Phase one was completed in 2011. It created the boardwalk that stretches all the way out to the harbor. Phase two is why there are commercial and public docks that stretch from Water’s Edge to Vickery’s, and that was finished in 2016.
Town officials say it was all done to increase public access to the water, and Jen Hayes, a structural engineer with Thomas and Hutton, says it was also done to improve safety.
“People are trying to pass each other on the [Coleman Boulevard] sidewalk. It’s so narrow,” Hayes said. “You have women with baby strollers, artists trying to set up easels and people running, walking and biking. So, you’ve got all these people trying to use that sidewalk. It’s just gonna give people a much wider, open space and a safe crossing.”
The project is being done by Cape Romain Contractors.