Berlin G. Myers construction causes concerns over upcoming school traffic

The first day of school is quickly approaching and that means it’s time to pay closer attention to traffic during pickup and drop-off hours.
Published: Aug. 1, 2023 at 4:55 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 2, 2023 at 11:48 AM EDT
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SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCSC) - The first day of school is quickly approaching and that means it’s time to pay closer attention to traffic during pickup and drop-off hours.

But one grandparent of a Newington Elementary School student says they have an even bigger issue on their hands: the Berlin G. Myers Parkway phase three construction.

Robin Cain’s grandson will be starting his third year at Newington Elementary, and she says traffic is always a bear during pickup and drop-off times.

“We have never gotten anything passed out to the parents during fax and fees time telling us how we are supposed to get in line for school, how we are supposed to exit, and I just want some control over the traffic,” Cain said.

Now, with the Berlin G. Myers Parkway phase three construction happening on Luden Drive, which leads to both Newington and Flowertown Elementary Schools, Cain says this is a recipe for disaster.

“I can only imagine this year with this construction how much more of a safety issue it is going to be,” Cain said. “And I think that the parents of these elementary schools need to know what we are supposed to do when all this rerouting takes place.”

Phase 3 is supposed to add a traffic light to the intersection at Luden and King Charles Circle, where the schools are located, to improve congestion. Construction for all of phase 3 is expected to be done in summer 2026.

The South Carolina Department of Transportation gave this response to Cain’s concerns:

That project is expected to be complete in the summer of 2026. Project description and details are available on our website:

We’re not aware of any traffic impacts caused by the current construction to the school traffic in that area. We restrict lane closures during peak school travel periods in the morning and afternoon. SCDOT has held several stakeholder meetings for folks in the area and have not received any similar feedback. We will continue to monitor traffic in the area and encourage anyone with concerns to be in touch with us directly – our Customer Service Center can be reached at 855-467-2368.”

When asking Dorchester District 2 about how they plan to prioritize safety in this area, they sent this statement:

“Schools communicate with their families about school operations. As a safety measure, our transportation team added bus stops for some students walking to school. We also adjusted our arrival approach for schools as needed.

As our community continues to grow and new homes are added, we continually monitor our environment and make necessary changes such as adding bus stops. "

“We need to be educated with this new construction how this road is going to affect us and what we need to do so that we have enough time to get our children to school on time,” Cain said.