What Lowcountry bridges SCDOT is keeping an eye on

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) – Dozens of bridges are getting a closer look at by the South Carolina Department of Transportation to ensure folks can drive safely to get to where they’re going.
One of the bridges on a priority list for rehabilitation and replacement is a portion of Interstate 26 over the railroad tracks near the North Charleston Tanger Outlets.
The American Road and Transportation Builders Association marks this as the second most traveled structurally deficient bridge in the state with an average of 87,800 crossings a day.
SCDOT’s Director of Public Engagement Kelly Moore sent the following statement in response:
SCDOT has a robust bridge inspection program and every bridge in our inventory is inspected every two years. If a bridge is deemed to be unsafe for travel, it will be immediately closed.
Like all of the other states in the nation, we are faced with the challenge of repairing and replacing aging infrastructure across our road and bridge network. This and the other bridges you referenced are already on a priority list for rehabilitation and replacement. As a part of the agency’s Strategic 10-Year plan, we already have more than 330 bridge replacement and rehabilitation projects underway to address critical needs in our bridge network.
In addition, the General Assembly is currently considering an additional $200 million of annual funding that would be directed to expedite our repair and replacement program, addressing not only the bridges on our interstate corridors but also our primary and secondary routes – ensuring the continued safe and efficient movement of goods and people.
On top of that work, SCDOT is keeping track of dozens of bridges across the state that are deemed Scour Critical Bridges, which are bridges that have an unstable foundation because sediment has washed out from underneath them.
Right now, four bridges in Berkeley County are marked as having an unstable foundation and as many as 53 in Orangeburg County. Some bridges on this list have an unknown status.
Plus, a bridge on Highway 17 connecting Charleston and Colleton counties over the Edisto River is scheduled to be replaced starting this summer. Construction will add about an extra foot to each of the four travel lanes and four to six feet of room on the shoulders.
SCDOT says on its website that this bridge has structural deficiencies that require attention but did not specify what exactly. Fortunately, the bridge is still safe to cross as normal.
The replacement will not shut down the bridge but will be staged so folks can still get from county to county. The construction of this is set to take about two years.
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