SC Gov. Henry McMaster to discuss new interstate between I-95 and Grand Strand

Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 10:41 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster will be holding a conference to discuss transportation improvements to the state, Monday.

A statement from the Governor’s Office said McMaster will be discussing the creation of a new interstate in South Carolina that would connect I-95 to Myrtle Beach.

The new interstate, I-73, was recently brought back into the foreground when Sen. Lindsey Graham put in a federal earmark for $12 million of funding back in June.

Joined by South Carolina Department of Transportation Secretary Christy Hall, McMaster proposed a $300 million investment in the I-73 project that would be funded by a combination of American Rescue Plan funds and non-recurring dollars from the state’s projected $1 billion budget surplus for the fiscal year 2022.

“If we seize this moment by thinking big, being bold, and making transformative investments, I believe we can change South Carolina’s future for the better,” McMaster said. “I can think of nothing more transformative than the state committing the first $300 million to kickstart this critical project. It is my hope that this commitment will serve as a catalyst for our local government partners to finalize their investment plans and will strengthen the position of our congressional delegation as they work to secure federal funding so that we can finally make I-73 a reality.”

Officials say the total estimated cost of the project is $1.6 billion and by the state committing the first funding, local and federal government partners will be able to finalize their own funding plans.

“I am aggressively pursuing funding for I-73,” Graham said back in June. “I believe it is a critical infrastructure project for the Grand Strand and the state of South Carolina as a whole. The Grand Strand is a cash cow for the state, and I am determined to help provide a better means of transportation for those traveling to and from this tourist destination.”

Four decades have passed since Congress first required a study for Interstate 73.

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