The state Transportation Department, in cooperation with the Federal Highway Administration, has started work on developing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) focusing on existing and projected traffic volumes where Interstate 20, I-26, and I-126 converge northwest of downtown Columbia.
|Graphic/S.C. Department of Transportation|
The Environmental Impact Statement and public input will help officials in their efforts to find a solution that will relieve congestion, improve traffic flow, increase safety, and increase capacity.
The I-20, I-26 and I-126 corridor, also known as “Malfunction Junction,” is regarded as the crossroads of the South Carolina economy and serves as the major hub for the Midlands' commuters, travelers and commerce.
In addition to being a main route in and out of Columbia, I-26 is a thoroughfare for travelers headed to the coast and mountains for recreation and a major cargo route between Lowcountry ports and Upstate manufacturers.
A SCDOT study in 2014 found that an average of 134,000 vehicles daily flow through the interchanges.
As an interstate corridor initially developed in the 1950s and 1960s and improved during the 1970s and 1980s, I-20, I-26 and I-126 does not meet current demands. Access ramps to and from each interstate consistently become congested. Finding an up-to-date solution has become a statewide priority. This project will play a critical role to create mobility and safety in one of the most congested highway corridors in the state.
The meeting will be Sept. 10, from 5-7 p.m., at Seven Oaks Elementary School, 2800 Ashland Road.
A formal presentation will be given at 5:30 p.m. In addition, maps of the project area and a schedule will be available and the project team will be on hand to discuss the process.
For those unable to attend the meeting, an online version of the meeting will be available between Aug. 27 and Sept. 25 on the project website.
The public will have 15 days after the meeting to submit comments on the proposed project. Comments are due by Sept. 25. Comments can be emailed to info@CarolinaCrossroadsSCDOT.com, recorded by the Project Hotline number at 1-800-601-8715 or mailed to:
Carolina Crossroads Corridor Project
C/O South Carolina Department of Transportation
Midlands Regional Production Group
955 Park Street, Room 418
PO Box 191
Columbia, South Carolina 29202-0191