SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCSC) - People in the Summerville area are concerned about the delays on the North Maple Street improvement project.
“Residents in the area have got some concerns,” Summerville councilman Aaron Brown said. “Coming into Summerville going west is beautiful, it’s lighted, it’s got beautiful sidewalks, landscaped. And then when you get up there by the Brownswood subdivision, it’s run down, got potholes...perception to some of the people in the area that is that the low income people are being left out. And so we don’t want that.”
Summerville Public Works Director Russell Cornette says the project has been in the works since 2014.
“There’s been a lot of questions in the community,” he said. “And statements saying why we didn’t do this back then. It wasn’t going to happen at all until 2014 and we’ve been working diligently for the past five or six years to get the Maple Street project underway and we are happy to get it underway and into construction later this year.”
Brown says some of the main concerns are the truck traffic and narrow lanes.
“You’ve got all the traffic coming from going to I-26 and you’ve got big trucks, you’ve got little trucks you got all kinds of vehicles and they’re going very fast because of the wide, beautiful road,” Brown said. “And that bottleneck just before you get to Highway 78, it’s horrible and there’s no turn lanes for people to turn left and right.”
Once finished, the road will be wider and have turn lanes and some sidewalks.
“Also this can alleviate additional traffic on North Main Street,” Cornette said. “People will not have to take Main Street to get to I-26, they can take Maple Street.”
Brown says the delay is nobody’s fault but he doesn’t want the project to get moved to the back burner.
“I don’t want the Maple Street project to become another Berlin G. Myers project...it’s still not done,” Brown added. “I don’t want that project to be like that, we need to finish this thing.”
The goal is to start construction on the $16 million project this summer. Cornette says they are finishing up right-of-way acquisition and permitting with SCDOT.
Click here to a breakdown of the expected changes.