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Charleston-based nonprofits speak on concerns over I-526 widening project

Published: May. 7, 2022 at 5:31 PM EDT|Updated: May. 7, 2022 at 11:29 PM EDT
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NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Two Charleston-based nonprofits teamed up Saturday morning for a community clean-up at Ralph M. Hendricks Park in North Charleston.

During the cleanup, both Charleston Waterkeeper, a nonprofit focused on protecting the waterways, and Charleston Moves, a non-profit that aims to improve pedestrian movement, said they are concerned with the proposed widening of I-526.

Andrew Wunderley, with Charleston Waterkeeper, tests the water at Filbin creek in North Charleston every Wednesday from May through October.

Wunderley says with part of I-526 running over the creek, it is likely to have high levels of bacteria.

“That bacteria and those pathogens get here into the creek through stormwater,” Wunderley says. “One of the biggest contributors to stormwater in this watershed is 526.”

After rain or flooding bacteria levels in Filbin Creek rise, Wunderley suggests fishing, crabbing or getting in the water during dryer times because there will often be fewer bacteria.

Kate Crall and her family were out volunteering. Crall says she took this opportunity to show her 3-year-old son what meaningful work is and the importance of taking care of their environment.

Charleston Waterkeeper and Charleston Moves urge the community to get involved with the South Carolina Department of Transportation’s plans for widening I-526 and to be mindful of when they come in contact with the waterways.

Charleston Waterkeeper posts updates on the data they collect every Friday via social media or their website.

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