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Kershaw County residents question ongoing bridge repairs, safety

SCDOT said work is ongoing for I-20 and U.S. Highway 1 bridges
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KERSHAW COUNTY, S.C. — Ongoing bridge projects in Kershaw County have led to increasing congestion and questions from drivers and residents about when the construction will be completed.
“I think it’s concerning first of all; we have two bridges in the same county that are in this state of disrepair,” said Kershaw County resident Patty Rose.
The concerns revolve around the bridge over I-20 that settled in December, which led the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) to cease travel on that bridge. SCDOT made initial repairs, but work on the project is ongoing, reducing the interstate to just one lane on multiple occasions.
“I understand things take time; I don’t want them to rush this because we would like this done right, so we’re not back here in 5 months,” Rose said.
News19 sought insights from SCDOT on the ongoing projects. According to a statement from the department:
“Crews have been working on strengthening the shoulder of I-20 eastbound by removing and replacing the existing asphalt. Once the shoulders have been strengthened, the travel lanes for I-20 will be shifted to allow bridge crews to begin work on the I-20 eastbound bridge that crosses the Wateree River.
Crews are also working in the median to construct access points for equipment and personnel to operate under the bridges.
Further east, crews have continued work on the bridge that needed emergency repairs back in December,”.
The second bridge on U.S. Highway 1 in Lugoff is causing significant traffic disruptions. Reduced to one lane for months, the situation has led to extensive backups, with frustrated drivers resorting to using both lanes, escalating tensions among commuters.
“People driving down the center of both lanes trying to prevent people from passing, tempers are flaring,” Rose said.
“Nobody knows, and if I had a dollar for every time someone on Facebook asked what’s going on, I wouldn’t have to do real estate,” said Terri Horton.
In response to a request for an update on U.S. Highway 1, SCDOT stated that no update was available. The agency said in its October 2023 update:
“The lane is closed to allow for emergency repairs. construction is not delayed – the project is currently in the design phase as the repair plan and schedule are determined. we expect construction work to be underway in the near future and wrapped up in early 2024. once a contract has been awarded, we will have more details to provide on the repair schedule.”
As the community grapples with ongoing traffic disruptions and safety concerns, residents remain hopeful for timely and effective resolutions to the bridge issues.

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