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Traffic relief coming soon to drivers of Johns Island

JOHNS ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) – Charleston County leaders have been working to improve traffic congestion on Johns Island and the area of Maybank Highway and River Road will soon be much easier to travel on.
The county has been working on improvements to Maybank Highway since 2004 and will soon have the third and final phase of these improvement projects completed. Pitchfork Road connects Fenwick Hall Alle to River Road and will serve as an alternative route to Maybank Highway.
Drivers traveling from James Island to Johns Island will be able to bypass the light at Maybank Highway and River Road by using the new Pitchfork Road. This will also apply to drivers coming in the opposite direction. This road can be used as an alternate route to get to James Island. Pitchfork Road will be officially open for use on the afternoon of March 25 and county leaders encourage everyone to use it.
Construction on Pitchfork Road began in 2022 and leaders are excited to host a ribbon-cutting ceremony to commemorate the official opening of the road. This will take place on March 25.
County Construction Project Manager Sheila Parker says that they are really looking to improve safety and relieve traffic in the area.
“I think the people in general are looking forward to, you know, new infrastructure come into John’s Island to help alleviate traffic. We see, you know, development coming and so we need the infrastructure to really accommodate all that,” Parker says.
Parker says that the county has recently made some other changes to the intersection of Maybank Highway and River Road to further improve the flow of traffic.
“We recently restriped Maybank at the intersection of Maybank and River Road, really to accommodate more storage to the left turn lane,” she says. “Previously the left turn lane would stack up with cars and it would block the through lane going straight and so, that would cause traffic backups. Now with more storage, the left turn lane traffic flow improves, and more people can get into the left turn lane.”
A recent road stripe adjustment on Maybank Highway will allow more people to utilize the left turn lane. (Charleston County)
Parker says that all of this work is to benefit the residents and drivers of the community and to make traveling on these roads a little easier.
“It’s great to see headway and, you know, the improvements are coming slowly but surely. We’re looking to relieve traffic and improve safety of this area. This has been a big focus for the county,” Parker says.
The county has some safety improvements coming to River Road soon as well. Crews will be working on the addition of reflective markings and rumble strips to the road. This work will lead to some nighttime closures on River Road from Main Road to Maybank Highway. This will take place from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. Sunday through Friday for about the next two weeks.
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