SCDOT Projects Await Stimulus Package Approval

Tue February 12, 2008 - Southeast Edition
CEG



South Carolina Transportation Secretary H.B. Limehouse Jr. has unveiled a package of highway projects that could be under contract in six months if the Economic Stimulus Package for Transportation discussed by Congress becomes reality.

The possibility exists that Congress may allocate billions of dollars toward the federal-aid highway program as part of its Economic Stimulus Package. Limehouse said that the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) has a plan that gets work started quickly on important road projects, and stimulates the construction business, which would provide jobs in the state.

“We stand ready to work with our South Carolina Congressional delegation by providing this list of projects that could be under construction in 2008. The partnerships SCDOT has with our members of Congress and the S.C. General Assembly have always been successful. Together we can build and maintain highways that will benefit our people and the economy,” Limehouse said.

The 13 projects proposed by Limehouse and SCDOT have been through the criteria process and have been ranked on the priority list. The exceptions are projects that are already under construction, such as the U.S. 17 widening project in Beaufort County. Funding from the proposed Stimulus Package would provide for the widening of additional miles of U.S. 17.

“The transportation stimulus package would be wonderful news for the people of the fifth district as well as for all of South Carolina,” said SCDOT Chairman Bobby T. Jones, who represents the Fifth Congressional District. “The SCDOT Commission and staff are ready to move forward with important projects across our state to help our economy and improve safety.”

The list of projects submitted by SCDOT are located in 26 of the state’s 46 counties.

The projects are:

U.S. 17 ACE Basin

Beaufort and Colleton counties

Estimated Construction Cost: $150 million (to be updated when scope finalized)

Status: The purpose of this project is to improve safety on a 22-mi. segment of U.S. 17 from U.S. 21 in Gardens Corner to S.C. 64 in Jacksonboro, in Beaufort and Colleton counties. U.S. 17 is part of the National Highway System and the Strategic Highway Network (STRAHNET) for defense preparedness. Of the 211 mi. in South Carolina, 179 mi. have been upgraded to a multi-lane highway, primarily four lanes separated by a grass median. The remaining 32 mi. consist of a two-lane roadway. The segment of U.S. 17 in Beaufort County has been advanced to construction. The remaining portions of the project within Colleton County are ready to go to construction. Up to $150 million could be used immediately towards the project under the existing design build proposal. This design/build project is in the STIP and is estimated at $248 million. It is funded through a combination of a $10 million earmark from SAFETEA-LU, $80.3 million SIB loan, and $7.4 million in contributions from local government (Beaufort County, Colleton County, Low Country COG). The economic stimulus request associated with this project is $150 million.

Interstate 95 Rehab

in Florence and Dillon Counties

Florence and Dillon counties

Estimated Construction Cost: $54.6 million (to be updated when scope finalized)

Status: This project is currently under development. No surveys will be required as “strip map” type plans will be prepared in anticipation of a June 2008 letting. A scoping meeting/initial field review has been conducted. Currently, the resident construction engineer is finalizing field quantity estimates, and the pavement design engineer is reviewing the revised project limits for scope. A categorical exclusion will be required, and no environmental permits are anticipated to be needed. Plans should be completed by the end of April.

Interstate 95 Rehab

in Clarendon County

Clarendon County

Estimated Construction Cost: $35 million

Status: This project is currently under development. No surveys will be required as “strip map” type plans will be prepared in anticipation of an August 2008 letting. A scoping meeting/initial field review has been conducted. Currently, the resident construction engineer is finalizing field quantity estimates. A categorical exclusion will be required. No environmental permits are anticipated to be needed. Plans should be complete by the end of June 2008.

U.S. 25 White Horse Road

Greenville County, from Broadway Boulevard (Road S-1047) for 0.123 mi. north of Road S-506

Estimated Construction Cost: $30.8 million

Status: This is a five-lane shoulder project along White Horse Road in Greenville. The Environmental Assessment and FONSI have been approved. This project is awaiting funding to complete.

U.S. 76/178

East West Connector

Anderson County

Estimated Construction Cost: $14.5 million

Status: This is a five-lane shoulder project along Clemson Boulevard in Anderson, also known as the East-West Connector. The project will connect S.C. 81 to U.S. 76/178. It is on hold awaiting funding.

Reconstruct S-114

Stage Coach Road (Phase 2)

Laurens County

Estimated Construction Cost: $3.5 million

Status: This is a two-lane shoulder project along Stage Coach Road in Laurens. The environmental documents have been secured and the project is awaiting funding.

I-26 at Remount Road

and Aviation Avenue

Charleston County

Estimated Construction Cost: $63 million

Widen I-26 from just west of Ashley Phosphate Road to just east of the Mark Clark Expressway in Charleston County. Reconstruct interchanges at Remount Road (S-13) and Aviation Avenue (S-1342). All rights of way have been acquired, permits are anticipated by March 2008 and construction plans are complete and specifications assembled.

I-85 Northbound

and Southbound Resurfacing

and Rehabilitation

Spartanburg County

Estimated Construction Cost: $3.9 million

Status: This resurfacing project is for the northbound and southbound lanes of I-85 near U.S. 29 to near I-85 Business.

Berlin Myers Parkway (Phase III)

Dorchester County

Estimated Construction Cost: $62.4 million

Status: This intersection improvement project will construct a five-lane curb and gutter roadway from S.C. 165 to U.S. 17A. Right of way acquisition is under way, permits are expected by June 2008 and the construction plans are under way and will be ready for an August 2008 letting. If needed, project may be let in advance of permit acquisition as significant work could be accomplished in areas not impacted by the permit.

Ben Sawyer Bridge

(SC 703) Rehabilitation

Charleston County

Estimated Construction Cost: $40 million

Status: This project is a design-build project to replace bridge superstructure over the Intracoastal Waterway in Charleston County. Existing substructure to remain in service with new approach spans, superstructure, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems. All rights of way have been acquired, the FONSI is imminent and the design-build project delivery method to be for RFP advertisement (March 1, 2008). Price and proposal are due May 1 and the contract is to be signed July 1.

Off-System Bridge Replacement

Lancaster, Chester, Chesterfield, Fairfield, Union, York and Cherokee counties

Estimated Construction Cost: $25 million

Status: Twenty-six off-system bridges are in need of replacement. The commission approved the use of design-build to replace bridges in this area.

Safety Projects

Berkeley, Clarendon, Darlington, Dorchester, Florence, Greenville, Horry, Lancaster, Lexington, Pickens and Richland counties

Estimated Construction Cost: $20.2 million

ITS Projects

Various counties to include but not limited to Charleston, Richland and Spartanburg

Estimated Construction Cost: $6.35 million