Skip to main content

First Post and Update of 2006!

First a belated Happy New Year to All! The past month has been busy with travel, work and of course the holidays so I apologize for not posting to my blog until now.

I've just recently completed an update to South Carolina Highways. The update is relatively small but a lot of good news and information has come up since July of last year.

Interstate 73:

A lot of goodies here. The $81 million allotment of funds in the SAFETEA-LU Act has really given new momentum to I-73 in South Carolina. Basically the $81 million will cover all environmental studies and give the state a head start on right-of -way acquisition. It's a major step towards the completion of an estimated $2 BILLION route. Since the $81 million was announced, the state has gained another $4 million from Congress. All good news right? Well as Lee Corso would say, "Not so fast, my friend."

In November, both of the State's senators, Graham and DeMint, offered in a bill to cut the $81 million in I-73 funding and divert it to Katrina relief. Both senators admitted that the moving of the $81 million wouldn't happen, but why as some editorials read even mess with that possibility?

Even with that political game aside, there is still a long way to go towards the completion of I-73 inside South Carolina. The new consideration is to Toll the highway. This idea was again pulled off the shelf and dusted off this past December. Brunswick County, NC commissioners have suggested that North Carolina build I-74 as a toll road to hasten construction. And although it is only a suggestion at this point, it made enough noise for leaders of communities that will be served by I-73 to go forth and plan to make a formal proposal to build I-73 as a Toll Road. This legislation will be introduced by State Representative Doug Jennings of Bennettsville. He hopes to bring it up to vote in the next legislative session so stay tuned.

Another possibility for funding that isn't mentioned yet is the State Infrastructure Bank. (I-73 may be ineligible for this funds though). Horry County is currently has an application in to receive $150 million in funds to build the next segment of the Conway Bypass. If I-73 is indeed eligible, this could be another source for funding the completion of the Interstate.

Carolina Bays Parkway:

As I just mentioned, Horry County is currently awaiting a decision on their application for $150 million in road funds from the State Infrastructure Bank. They face four proposals, one from SCDOT, another from Anderson County, and another from Charleston County. Origianlly all four were competing for $150 million but the state has recently announced if has $300 million available.

The SCDOT application is to widen a very dangerous and deadly two-lane stretch of US 17 in Beaufort and Colleton Counties. 34 people have died along a 22 mile stretch of road between Gardens Corner and Jacksonboro since 1997! The state wishes for a $90 million grant and a $48 million loan. They would also use $23 million in cash, $10 million from Congress, $2 million from Beaufort County and $200,000 each from Colleton County and the Low Country Council of Governments. (See article)


Anderson County has applied for $150 million to be used towards widening 22 miles of highway on three different roads for economic development.

Charleston County wishes for $720 million --obviously the Bank doesn't have this much -- $420 million would go towards extending I-526 to James Island. The other $300 million is for a road from I-26 to the Port of Charleston.

Horry County requests $150 million for building the Carolina Bays Parkway from SC 544 to SC 707 and widening SC 707 to five lanes from the Parkway to US 17.

Personally, I believe the SCDOT request will be granted in full and that most of all of Horry County's request will be granted. That will total -- if all the Horry County Money is granted -- $288 million the remaining $12 million will either remain or go to Anderson County. The Charleston County requests are for projects already being considered to be built by the state.

The decision should come sometime in February.

Other Notes:

I decided against adding the Auto Trails list at this time because i do not have enough information to really start a page. Currently, I have leads on the Bankhead Highway, Black Bear, Boone, Bryan Geer, Dixie, and Jefferson Davis Trails. If you may know of any good leads for me to start with on these routes, please let me know!

Next is a few Georgia pictures that I will be adding from Steve Williams and JP Natsiatka then I will be working on North Carolina. I've gotten some new Ends photos since I posted in December.

Comments

Froggie said…
Regarding I-73 and the senators offering up the $81 million from SAFETEA-LU to help with Katrina reconstruction, and the negative reaction of such...

I-73 to me is a WANT. It is not a need. The "people who need it", as the Myrtle Beach editorial describes it, are the economic development folks and little else. Let's get NEEDED infrastructure REBUILT first (such as destroyed bridges, levees, and waterworks) before we start blowing money on infrastructure wants.
Mistral said…
Have any toll/non-toll aadt comparisons been done for 73 and 74 in NC and SC? It would be a great shame if these two much needed routes became relatively empty 'rich mens' highways' like some of the lesser-used autoroutes in France.
Scott Kozel said…
Currently I-73 is a "want" and not a "need", but now is the time to be planning the route, conducting the EIS studies, and working to complete the NEPA process so that it can be built.

By about 2015 or 2020, a completed I-73 at least between VA I-81 and SC I-95, will be a "need", IMHO.

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 88 the Carson Pass Highway

Between 2016 and 2017 I drove the majority of California State Route 88 from CA 99 in Stockton east over Carson Pass to CA 89.






CA 88 is a 122 mile state highway from CA 99 in Stockton east over the Sierra Nevada Range to the continuation route Nevada State Route 88 at the Nevada State Line.  CA 88 is known as the Carson Pass Highway.  Carson Pass at 8,574 feet above sea level along CA 88 is an all-year Mountain Pass in the Sierras and on occasion designated as Temporary US Route 50 when conditions are bad over Echo Summit. 

CA 88 was not one of the original Signed State Highways.  CA 8 was the original designation over Carson Pass which can be seen on the 1938 California State Highway Map.

1938 State Highway Map

CA 8 was substantially different than CA 88 west of Jackson as it largely follows the current route of CA 26.  From US 99E in 1934 and later US 50/99 in 1936 from Stockton CA 8 originally used the following route to reach Jackson:

-  Legislative Route 5 from US 99 in Stockton …

California State Route 49; The Golden Chain Highway (CA 41 north to CA 16)

Last year I traveled California State Route 49 from CA 16 north to CA 89 in one continuous trip.  This year and in early 2016 I traveled the rest of CA 49 south to CA 41 in Oakhurst.  This blog post consists of photos of the highway from those time periods and historical information about the southern part of CA 49.


This blog post is meant to be a continuation of the previous one I did regarding CA 49 from CA 16 north to CA 89.  A link to said blog post can be found below:

California State Route 49; The Golden Chain Highway (CA 16 north to CA 89)

As stated in the previous blog post; CA 49 is an approximately 295 mile long north/south highway which traverses the traditional Gold Rush Country of California.  While I intend to discuss county level historical alignments of CA 49 as I did in the first blog post I thought this would be a good place to discuss the backstory of highway.

CA 49 was first signed in 1934 along a series of Legislative Route Numbers ("LRN") that were large…

Caliente-Bodfish Road/Kern County Road 483

Back in 2016 I took Caliente-Bodfish Road south towards California State Route 58 while leaving the Sierra Nevada Range after looking for the town site of Old Kernville.






Caliente-Bodfish Road is also known as Kern County Road 483 which I believe is an internal designation for mountainous roadways within the Sierra Nevada Range.  Caliente-Bodfish Road begins at Kern Canyon Road (Old California State Route 178) at the southern extent of Bodfish and climbs over the southern most extent of the Sierra Nevada Range approximately 35 miles to Bena Road near Caliente.  Caliente-Bodfish Road is a full two-lane road despite traversing some narrow terrain in the Sierras.  The high point on Caliente-Bodfish Road appeared to be near 4,000 feet above sea-level and I would estimate that there grades as high as 10% in places.

South of Bodfish Caliente-Bodfish Road ascends quickly above the community on a series of switchbacks.  There is no official overlook but there is a hell of a view of Bodfish an…