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Five years later…Kennerly Road/Coogler Road Intersection

Five years ago, I posted this article . Today, The State reports improvements are coming – as a result of the “Penny Tax”.

From The State…

Drivers in Richland County could see the first road improvement projects funded by a local sales tax completed by year’s end.

Meeting in Clemson for a two-day planning retreat, Richland County Council members seemed eager to get started on six intersection improvement projects outlined by transportation director Rob Perry.

The $15 million in construction could involve enhancements for pedestrians and cyclists at the intersections as well, said Perry and his deputy, Chris Gossett.

“I’m ready,” several members chimed in after Perry asked for an endorsement.

First, the county must resolve a protest over the hiring of a project management firm brought by the second-place finisher. Chairman Norman Jackson said he’s hopeful there will be a resolution soon.

The six intersection improvements would be the first tangible sign of progress after voters approved a penny-on-the-dollar sales tax for transportation improvements to roads, bus service and trails.

Until now, Perry has said unidentified dirt-road paving and suburban resurfacing projects probably would be the first projects completed. Thursday, he said it looks like those projects will proceed alongside the intersection improvements.

He’s also moving forward on a list of sidewalk improvements in coordination with the S.C. Department of Transportation.

He said the county’s project management firm, ICA Engineering, had suggested moving forward on the intersections as well.

Perry said each intersection will be studied to settle on the changes needed, but they would include such things as adding turns lanes, straightening or widening lanes, adding bike lanes and sidewalks, or putting in pedestrian signals.“We would expect at least one of the six to be completed by the end of the year,” Perry said.The intersections are:

To read more, click here

Kennerly Road / Coogler Road Intersection

When it comes to letters and calls from the community (relating to our roads) it’s THIS intersection that I hear about the most! Today I took the picture above but I could’ve posted photos from various accidents over the past year, or the large number of cars in the morning/afternoon for school drop-off/pick-up, etc.

Instead just a normal photo from the Coogler Road side.

If you’re not familiar with this location, you might not be able to notice there’s a curve (blind?) right before the intersection. Inevitably someone pulling out doesn’t see the traffic coming or they either underestimate the speed at which the cars are traveling. The result? Not good. A couple of accidents and many, many near-misses.

Since I’ve been elected, we’ve seen many road improvements in our community . I’ve been pleased with the Department of Transportation and their attention to our needs and I again say “thank you” to the Department and Thad Brunson (Administrator, SCDOT Engineering District 1) in particular.

At this intersection, Senator Courson and I have pushed for (and received) improvements with SEVERAL signs placed as you approach the intersection in either location. The intent is to draw people’s attention to the dangerous conditions. These signs include the usual warning signs as well as another set of flashing signals that were installed. We’ve also worked with Richland County Sheriff’s Department and had patrols monitor for speeders. Still, it appears accidents and congestion continue to happen.

So what’s next?

Serving on a few of the committees I have, I’ve learned that roads and signals cost money – LOTS of money! Being in state government, I’ve also seen how we have yet to improve funding for our infrastructure and, of course, I know how money is just not there for the improvements we need (for the state as a whole). Richland County Council even considered a sales-tax dedicated specifically for roads but that proposal was defeated.

To get the money, there’s two things that can happen at the state level. The gax tax can go up. (Note: No, thank you!) or we can dedicate money in the budget specifically for roads. The latter is exactly what the House tried to do last year when we passed a bill to take the sales tax on cars and dedicate that to road improvements. Unfortunately, the bill didn’t get out of the Senate.

To talk more specifically about this intersection….the cost just to put in turn lanes needed for a traffic signal runs roughly $900,000.

I’ve even thought about a traffic-circle (as others have thought, as well). We run into the same thing though…costs. Still runs about $900,000 PLUS the SCDOT has to get right-of-way from the property owners at the corners because more space is needed when you do a traffic-circle.

The cheapest way to help would be a Four-Way Stop put at the intersection. That is currently what we are pursuing but I’m not sure what the SCDOT traffic studies will tell us. While my gut and my eyes tell me we have to do more, the intersection still doesn’t meet the criteria for a traffic signal, traffic cirlce, or four-way stop.

Stay tuned for more details within the next two weeks…

Broad River Widening – update from Richland County Penny Tax

Like you, I’ve been wondering what the county has been doing for us with the Penny Tax revenue that passed years ago (our area being one of the few that voted against the tax ). Outside of a roundabout on Kennerly Road near Riversprings Elementary, that’s about all I see – from the county.

I did some searching on my website and can’t believe it’s been NINE YEARS since the county passed that tax!

After seeing all the work ramping up at the state level from DOT , I decided to check locally today with the county to see what they were doing for us. Glad I did, apparently “things have changed”. I learned a word I haven’t heard before. I was told the project has been “descoped” and that those changes were approved by Richland County Council.

Appears cost overuns is a primary reason for the change from an article from last year that sheds some light.

In any event, here was the update I saw this afternoon before calling to speak with Michael Niermeier, Director, Department of Transportation with Richland County Government.

A description of the “descope” is below and also can be seen by clicking here.

So, bottom line, it looks like we are 2-3 years away from the county using the Penny Tax to start construction on this improvement.

Not the news I wanted to hear today. I was told the county would come out here once the “descope” has been finalized so that we can see what they have proposed. I was told there isn’t enough money to do the “5 lane project” that we were originally sold. (I see what it’s hard to trust government anymore)

BROAD RIVER RD. WIDENING

Original Project Scope
The project scope for the Broad River Road Widening Project was to widen the roadway to 5
lanes between Royal Tower Drive and Dutch Fork Road in the Irmo community. In addition, the
road was to be widened to 3 lanes between Dutch Fork Road and I-26 (Exit 97).
(2) 4-foot wide bike lanes and (2) 5-foot wide sidewalks are included in the project scope.
Revised Project Scope – Based on traffic volumes, public input, and funding, the PDT recommended to
only include the widening from North Royal Tower to Dutch Fork.
Referendum Funding – $29,000,000.00 Current Cost Estimate: $39,663,756.37

Traffic Analysis and Results

The traffic study evaluated 15 intersections along the length of this project along with the
intersections of the off\on ramps of I-26. SCDOT plans to widen I-26 in this area, so the off\on
ramps would be addressed with their project.

The 2043 Level of Service in this corridor has been identified as “Adequate” for the proposed
improvements while the 2043 “No- Build” evaluation showed that the majority of the
intersections would operate at a “F” Level of Service. The recommended proposed
improvements from the traffic study are to improve the intersections by increasing turning bays.

Crash Data between 1/1/13 and 12/31/15 (3 years) shows that there were 161 crashes near these
15 intersections with the majority being rear-end collisions.
1 fatality

Public Input Results
185 residents attended the December 15, 2016, Public Meeting

The design alternative supported by the most residents was a 5 lane travel way that included 2 4-
foot wide bike lanes and 2 5-foot wide sidewalks

Residents agreed that removing the 3 lane section between Dutch Fork Road and I-26 was
preferred

Right-Of-Way

ROW Obtained To Date – 0 Expended To Date – $0

Possible Design Modifications to Lower Cost

Widen the road to 3 lanes (2 driving lanes and a median) and also provide turning lanes at the
intersections that are missing them at this time. This could improve turning movements in and
out of the many businesses in the corridor and decrease the number of rear-end collisions.
New Approx. Estimate: $30M (Approx. Savings $9.6M)

Note: This option would not improve capacity but would improve safety and would improve
flow since left-turning vehicles would be able to pull into the median instead of block the
flow of traffic.

The cost estimate includes approximately $1,150,000 to relocate a 54” waterline at SCDOT’s
request. Staff is currently working with SCDOT to possibly have this requirement removed.

UPDATE: several road improvements

w20-7a

Hopefully you’ve noticed improvements all around our community in the past several months! You will continue to see more in the months and years ahead!

When we return to session in January, the General Assembly will continue to address our infrastructure needs as this is vital not only to our way of life; but also the future of our state’s economy (aka jobs, jobs, jobs)

Thanks for bringing several of these needs to my attention. Thank you SCDOT for always being willing to listen and perform the studies needed to find solutions and improve safety!

By the way, there are 3 meetings next month that may be of interest to you:

October 4th (5pm-7pm) Seven Oaks Elementary – Carolina Crossroads (aka Malfunction Junction)
October 11th (5pm-7pm) Chapin High School – I 26 Widening Project ranging from est Exit 85 to Exit 101
October 13th (5pm-7pm) Chapin Middle School – same as above

** RECENTLY COMPLETED PROJECTS IN OUR AREA **

Richland County CTC Resurfacing
West Shady Grove Road (S-40-612).

S-40-940: Peace Haven Road
Completed except for permanent pavement markings.

S-40-1403: Three Dog Road
Completed except for permanent pavement markings.

S-40-620: Captain Lowman Road

** ACTIVE PROJECTS **

S-40-621: Trillie Lane
This road is under contract for full-depth reclamation and asphalt surface triple treatment. The completion date is November 30, 2016. RCE is Chris Kelly, can be contacted at 786-0706 regarding this project.

S-40-2265: Silver Point Road
This road is under contract for full-depth reclamation and asphalt surface triple treatment. The completion date is November 30, 2016. RCE is Chris Kelly, can be contacted at 786-0706 regarding this project.

** RICHLAND COUNTY PENNY PROJECT **

Kennerly Road at Coogler Road
This is a Richland County Penny Project being administered by ICA Engineering. Per my discussion with Project Manager Jennifer Bragg, the scope of the project is to install a roundabout at this intersection. It is one of six intersections included in a Design Build contract. The contract was awarded to C. R. Jackson and work started mid-August. The work on this project is expected to be completed in Spring of 2017. For more information, you may contact Project Manager Jennifer Bragg at (803) 726-6146 or Richland County Transportation Director Rob Perry at (803) 576-1526.

Widening Broad River Road
This is a Richland County Penny Project being administered by ICA Engineering. The general scope of this project is widening of Broad River Road from North Royal Tower Road to beyond I-26. The construction work is currently planned to begin in 2020. For more information, you may contact Richland County Transportation Director Rob Perry at (803) 576-1526.

I-26 Interstate Pavement Preservation
Interstate Preservation: I-26 from MP 100.8 to MP 107.7 in Richland and Lexington Counties. This project was in the July 12, 2016 Letting with a November 30, 2018 Contract Completion Date. Anticipated start is Spring 2017. Project is being managed by CEI Consultant – Infrastructure and Consulting Engineers. Point of contact is Jim Cravens, can be contacted at 822-0333 regarding this project.

I-126 Interstate Pavement Preservation
Interstate Preservation: I-126 from MP 0.00 to MP 3.68 in Richland County. This project was in the July 12, 2016 Letting with a November 30, 2018 Contract Completion Date. Anticipated start is Spring 2017. Project is being managed by CEI Consultant – Infrastructure and Consulting Engineers. Point of contact is Jim Cravens, can be contacted at 822-0333 regarding this project.

** 2016 Richland CTC Resurfacing Program **

Treatment: Resurface
Proposed Let Date: June 14, 2016
Completion Date: November 30, 2017
• Firetower Rd. – Kennerly Rd. to Western Ln.
• Scotts Hill Rd. – Hiller Rd. to Dead End.
• Owenswood Ln. – Western Ln. to Dead End.
• South Hampton Dr. – Koon Rd. to Davenport Dr.
• Davenport Dr. – Sutton Way to South Hampton Dr.
• Western Ln. – Broad River Rd. to 0.85 miles North of US 76.
Resident Construction Engineer: Chris Kelly 803 786-0706

** 2017 Federal Aid Preservation Program **
Treatment: Full Depth Patching (6211)
Proposed Let Date: September 13, 2016
Completion Date: TBD
• Chapin Rd. – Newberry Co. Line to Richland Co. Line.
Resident Construction Engineer: Joey McIntyre 803 359-4672

Treatment: PMST / Microsurfacing
Proposed Let Date: March 14, 2017
Completion Date: TBD
• Broad River Rd. – Newberry Co. Line to Broad River Rd.
Resident Construction Engineer: TBD

Treatment: Crack Seal
Proposed Let Date: March 14, 2017
Completion Date: TBD
• Dreher Shoals Rd. (SC 6) – US 76 to Lexington Co. Line.
• Dutch Fork Rd. (US 76) – Lexington Co. Line to 0.25 miles West of Gates Rd.

Resident Construction Engineer: TBD

** 2017 Federal Aid Rehab. Program **
Treatment: Resurface
Proposed Let Date: January 10, 2017
Completion Date: TBD
• N. Woodrow St. – Broad River Rd. to N. Royal Tower Rd.
Resident Construction Engineer: TBD

Treatment: Full Depth Reclamation
Proposed Let Date: TBD
Completion Date: TBD
• Ray Stoudemayer Rd. – Broad River Rd. to Newberry Co. Line
• Freshly Mill Rd. – Broad River Rd. to John Chapman Rd.

Resident Construction Engineer: TBD

** 2017 Non-Federal Aid Rehab. Program **
Treatment: Resurface
Proposed Let Date: September 13, 2016
Completion Date: TBD
• Dan Comalander Rd. – Broad River Rd. to Lexington Co. Line.
• Page Derrick Rd. – Kennerly Rd. to Shady Grove Rd.
• Eleazer Rd. – Shady Grove Rd. to Kennerly Rd.
• Point Dehaven Rd. – Richard Franklin Rd. to Local Rd.
• Rucker Rd. – Johnson Marina Rd. to Local Rd.
• Old Rd. – Richard Franklin Rd. to Old Rd.
• Creekwood Rd. – Old Rd. to Dead End.
• Circle Dr. – Richard Franklin Rd. to Richard Franklin Rd.
• Lazy Cove Ln. – Silver Point Rd. to Dead End.
• Gates Rd. – Dutch Fork Rd. to Wise Rd.

Resident Construction Engineer: Paul Miller 803 786-0717

** 2017 Non-Federal Aid Preservation Program **

Treatment: Full Depth Patching
Proposed Let Date: September 13, 2016
Completion Date: TBD
• Sid Bickley Rd. – Chapin Rd. to Dead End.
• Indian Fork Rd. – Hiller Rd. to Dead End.

Resident Construction Engineer: Joey McIntyre 803 359-4672

Treatment: Chip Seal
Proposed Let Date: June 14, 2016
Completion Date: June 30, 2017
• White Rock Rd. – Mt. Vernon Church Rd. to White Rock Rd.
• White Rock Rd. – White Rock Rd. to White Rock Rd.
• Three Dog Rd. – Old Hilton Rd. to Three Dog Conn.
• Three Dog Conn. – Old Hilton to Stone Hill Rd.
• Brody Rd. – Johnson Marina Rd. to Dead End.
• Amenity Rd. – Johnson Marina Rd. to Dead End.

Resident Construction Engineer: Robert Power 803 796-9540

Treatment: Chip Seal
Proposed Let Date: October 11, 2016
Completion Date: TBD
• Willow Cove Rd. – Old Forge Rd. to Dead End.
Resident Construction Engineer: Robert Power 803 796-9540

** FUTURE PROJECTS **

US-76 @ Johnson Marina Road Intersection Improvement
This is an intersection improvement project that will provide turn lanes on both US-76 and Johnson Marina Road. Traffic Engineering is currently developing plans for the project. They have indicated issues with both right of way and railroad at this location. The project was let September 2016 and has a completion date of September 30, 2017. RCE is Joey McIntyre, can be contacted at 359-4672 regarding this project.

St. Peters Church Road Safety Improvement
Tentative December 2016 Letting. This project involves moving the ditches back, widening the road ~2’ on each side, resurfacing, pavement markings, and guardrail. RCE is Joey McIntyre, can be contacted at 359-4672 regarding this project.

Bypass Lane on US 76 at Hiller Road
SCDOT Maintenance will construct a bypass lane on the railroad side of US 76. Work is expected to be completed by the end of October.

I-26 Widening
FROM EXIT 101 (US 176) HEADING WEST TO BE DETERMINED – RICHLAND, LEXINGTON, AND NEWBERRY COUNTIES.
The project includes widening of I-26 from MM 101 (US 176, Exit 101- Irmo) heading west on I-26 with the western termini to be determined. Project includes widening I-26 from 4 to 6 lanes for approximately 16 miles; overpass bridge replacements at S-58 (Koon Road), S-80 (Shady Grove Road), S-234 (Mt. Vernon Church Road), S-405 (Old Hilton Road), and S-49 (Peak Street); and jacking/rehabilitating overpass bridges at S-39 (Peak Road) and S-167 (Parr Road). Project is scheduled for 2018.

Other notable projects in the Chapin area include:
• Lexington Avenue Enhancement (Landscaping) Project for the Town of Chapin.
• Columbia Avenue Corridor Improvement Project – this proposed project is being administered by Lexington County. A consultant has proposed several alternatives for replacing the bridge over I-26, widening Columbia Avenue, and constructing new connector roads. These alternatives have been narrowed to a preferred plan that is being further developed and will be presented for public review sometime during the Fall or Winter of 2016.

UPDATE: community road improvements

Road_Construction_Sign

As I continue to speak with constituents in the district, everyone wants to know about roads! I’m pleased that most see the improvements in our area; but also understand their frustration with our state road system.

Below is an update to the report provided last August of improvements in our area:

SC-6 @ Salem Church Road Intersection Improvement
Project is now complete.

S-40-216: Lowman Home Barn Road
Project is now complete.

S-40-296 – A.J. Amick Road
Project is now complete.

S-40-620: Captain Lowman Road
This road is under contract for single treatment – Contract ID 5190090. C. R. Jackson is the prime contractor. No work has been performed on this road to date. We anticipate that C. R. Jackson will begin full depth patching in May 2016 and follow up with surface treatment shortly after patching is complete. The project has a completion date of September 30, 2016.

US-76 @ Johnson Marina Road Intersection Improvement

This is an intersection improvement project that will provide turn lanes on both US-76 and Johnson Marina Road. Traffic Engineering is currently developing plans for the project. They have indicated issues with both right of way and railroad at this location. The project is tentatively scheduled to be let September 2016.

Richland County Penny Project – Kennerly Road at Coogler Road
This is a Richland County Penny Project begin administered by ICA Engineering. Per my discussion with Project Manager Jennifer Bragg, the scope of the project is to install a roundabout at this intersection. It is one of six intersections included in a Design Build contract. The contract was awarded to C. R. Jackson with a window for completion in Spring 2017 of all intersections. For more information, you may contact Project Manager Jennifer Bragg at (803) 726-6146 or Richland County Transportation Director Rob Perry at (803) 576-1526.

Richland County CTC Resurfacing
Shadowood Drive (S-1680) is complete. West Shady Grove Road (S-612) needs additional full depth patching and then will be resurfaced. Water Garden Court (S-1708) is complete. The contract completion date is October 31, 2015. Lane is in Liquidated Damages at this time for not completing the project by the completion date.

Amicks Ferry Safety Improvement
This project was awarded to Lane Construction in September 2015. This project involves select clearing, widening the pavement ~1’ on each side, resurfacing, pavement markings, and guardrail. Clearing work is expected to begin mid to late April. The project is expected to be completed by Fall 2016.

St. Peters Church Road Safety Improvement
Tentative July 2016 Letting. This project involves moving the ditches back, widening the road ~2’ on each side, resurfacing, pavement markings, and guardrail.

Murray Lindler Road @ Old Lexington Road Roundabout
Tentative November 2016 letting.

OTHER COMPLETED PROJECTS

Firetower Road Bridge Replacements
Both of the bridges on Firetower Road have been replaced with SCDOT crews and the road has been reopened.

PROJECTS ADDED TO THE LIST

S-40-621: Trillie Lane
This road is under contract for full depth reclamation and asphalt surface triple treatment. The completion date is November 30, 2016.

S-40-2265: Silver Point Road
This road is under contract for full depth reclamation and asphalt surface triple treatment. The completion date is November 30, 2016.

S-40-940: Peace Haven Road
This road is under contract for full depth reclamation and asphalt surfacing. The completion date is October 31, 2016.

S-40-1403: Three Dog Road
This road is under contract for full depth reclamation and asphalt surfacing. The completion date is October 31, 2016.

I-26 and Interstate Pavement Preservation
Interstate Preservation: I-26 from MP 100.8 to MP 107.7 in Richland and Lexington Counties. Anticipated to be in the April 12, 2016 Letting with a June 30, 2018 Contract Completion Date

I-126 Interstate Pavement Preservation
Interstate Preservation: I-126 from MP 0.00 to MP 3.68 in Richland County. Anticipated to be in the April 12, 2016 Letting with a June 30, 2018 Contract Completion Date

I-26 Widening
FROM EXIT 101 (US 176) HEADING WEST TO BE DETERMINED – RICHLAND, LEXINGTON, AND NEWBERRY COUNTIES
The project includes widening of I-26 from MM 101 (US 176, Exit 101- Irmo) heading west on I-26 with the western termini to be determined. Project includes widening I-26 from 4 to 6 lanes for approximately 16 miles; overpass bridge replacements at S-58 (Koon Road), S-80 (Shady Grove Road), S-234 (Mt. Vernon Church Road), S-405 (Old Hilton Road), and S-49 (Peak Street); and jacking/rehabilitating overpass bridges at S-39 (Peak Road) and S-167 (Parr Road). Project is scheduled for 2018.

Other notable projects in the Chapin area include:
• Lexington Avenue Enhancement (Landscaping) Project for the Town of Chapin

Intersection Improvements on the way?

Intersection

A few years ago, when Richland County passed the “Penny Tax” ( don’t get me started again on all that), I was hopeful we would soon see improvements in our area. Frankly, there wasn’t much in our area in that “Penny Tax” proposal; but this one intersection was at least supposed to be addressed.

Here is the lastest update for that Kennerly Road/Coogler Road intersection.

***
Representative Ballentine – I am writing to provide an update on the status of this Richland County Penny Project being administered by ICA Engineering. Per my discussion with Richland County Transportation Director Rob Perry, the scope of the project is to install a roundabout at this intersection They awarded the contract on November 1st with an 18-month window for completion of all intersections. Due to the complexity of the intersection, late summer 2016 is the earliest anticipated start date, however it may be as late as Fall 2016.

For more information, you may contact Project Manager Jennifer Bragg at (803) 726-6146 or Richland County Transportation Director Rob Perry at (803) 576-1526.

Please let me know if I may be of further assistance with this or any other transportation related issue.

Bryan L. Jones, P.E.
District Engineering Administrator
SCDOT – District One

***

Roads, Bridges, Intersections, Lights

Road_Construction_Sign

While the General Assembly was unable to pass a “Roads Plan” (note: I voted for the plan that the House passed; but it didn’t make it out of the Senate), there is still alot of improvments happening around House District 71.

Below is an update from the SCDOT on the improvements going on in our community!

SC-6 @ Salem Church Road Intersection Improvement
The work on SC-6 is on-going, but utility conflicts have halted the pipe work. C.R. Jackson is actively working on other items until the utilities are relocated. C.R. Jackson plans to fine grade and pour curb and gutter this week and hopefully start back laying pipe August 24. City of Columbia plans to have a crew onsite this week to lower a 3” water main that is in conflict and SCE&G currently has a subcontractor onsite relocating a gas line. They plan to tap the line Thursday, August 20, and be out of the area by the Friday. There is also a meeting scheduled with AT&T to confirm the specific location of their lines for the installation of the remaining 2 signal pole foundations.

The expected completion date for this project is September 30, 2015. This should be attainable if no more utility conflicts are encountered and the current issues are resolved in a timely fashion.

S-40-216: Lowman Home Barn Road
The scope of this reclamation project was to grind up the existing roadway surface and base materials at least 8” in depth, add in cement, and remix while adding water. The result of this process produces a cement modified base course which is then overlaid with asphalt. This reconstruction method is very economical as compared to traditional patching and produces a structurally sound roadway which will last for many years to come.

The reclamation process has been completed and a temporary gravel riding surface has been installed. Milling and installation of traffic signal detection loops will be complete by end of week. The final asphalt surfacing is scheduled to begin at the end of this week or first of next week.

S-40-296 – A.J. Amick Road
Reclamation is also complete on this road, however, the final asphalt surface has not been placed yet. Surface will be placed once Lowman Home Barn is complete.

S-40-620: Captain Lowman Road
This road is under contract for single treatment – Contract ID 5190090. C. R. Jackson is the prime contractor. No work has been performed on this road to date. We anticipate that C. R. Jackson will full depth patch this winter and the single treatment will be placed in 2016 once seasonal restrictions have been lifted. The project has a completion date of September 30, 2016.

Richland County CTC Resurfacing
Shadowood Drive (S-1680), West Shady Grove Road (S-612) and Water Garden Court (S-1708) are part of this contract. Work has not started yet. The completion date is October 31, 2015.

Firetower Road Bridge Replacements
Local SCDOT bridge maintenance crews have completed the first bridge replacement on Firetower Road and are in the midst of replacing the second. We hope to have the project completed and the roadway reopened prior to October 1st.

Richland County Penny Project – Kennerly Road at Coogler Road
This is a Richland County Penny Project begin administered by ICA Engineering. Per my discussion with Project Manager Jennifer Bragg, the scope of the project is to install a roundabout at this intersection. It is one of six intersections included in a Design Build contract. They hope to award the contract by September with an 18-month window for completion of all intersections. For more information, you may contact Project Manager Jennifer Bragg at (803) 726-6146 or Richland County Transportation Director Rob Perry at (803) 576-1526.

I-26 Rehab
Several bridges along the I-26 corridor (89 MM to 101 MM) are scheduled to be combined in one large project in advance of the I-26 roadway rehabilitation project. These bridges will either be raised to provide for interstate clearance or replaced. The contract is tentatively set to be let late 2016. The roadway contract is expected to follow in 2017.

US-76 @ Johnson Marina Road Intersection Improvement
This is an intersection improvement project that will provide turn lanes on both US-76 and Johnson Marina Road. The initial project scoping meeting was held two weeks ago and currently the project is scheduled to be let Summer 2016.

Other notable projects in the Chapin area include
– Amicks Ferry Safety Improvement
– St. Peters Church Road Safety Improvement
– Murray Lindler Road @ Old Lexington Road Roundabout

Infrastructure Improvements coming to the area

Roads

The projects listed in the paragraphs below are scheduled for the DOT; they do not include projects that will be funded by the “penny” in Richland County . The two “penny projects” are: Widening of Broad River Road from Royal Tower up to I26 (Exit 97) with projected cost $29,000,000. Intersection improvement on Kennerly (Coogler/Steeple Ridge) with projected cost of $1,900,000.

DOT scheduled projects outside of the transportation penny projects above:

Sidewalk Improvement at Royal Tower Drive, S-1862 (Brickling Road)
Anticipated Project Cost: $42,100
Schedule: Letting is scheduled for May 2015

Intersection Improvement at US76 (Dutch Fork Road) and S-618 (Johnson Marina Road)
Anticipated Project Cost: $1,220,000
Schedule: Letting is scheduled for Fall 2016

Bridge Replacement over I26 2 miles East of Ballentine (Koon Road)
Anticipated Project Cost: $3,770,000
Schedule: RFP Opening is scheduled for Fall 2016

Bridge Replacement over I26 2 miles east of Ballentine (Shady Grove Road)
Anticipated Project Cost: $4,896,400
Schedule: RFP Opening is scheudled for Fall 2016

I26 Rehabilitation between mile marker 89 and mile mnarker 101 (I26 Eastbound)
Anticipated Project Cost: $505,900
Schedule RFP Opening is scheduled for Fall 2016

Road Improvements: Richard Franklin and more…

2014 Richard Franklin

For any pothole or resurfacing requests of Richland County Roads, please email ombudsman@rcgov.us or contact our local county councilman, Bill Malinowski. If the road is maintained by the SCDOT, then contact me directly.

Ever since I was elected, it seems “potholes, intersections and roads” are what most people seem to care most about. Over the years, we’ve seen several improvements in the area. Too many to post over. Here’s a post from the past from the past and another years ago , most importantly, here is the latest information on some “most talked about” areas in the district:

1) Kennerly Road/Coogler Road intersection. No timetable but this is one of the intersections slated to be funded by the “Penny Tax” in Richland County. Years back, Senator Courson and I worked to get “flashing signals/signage” but even today there are still accidents at this location.

2) There is NO ‘bridge’ being considered from our area to Blythewood across Broad River (aka a northern arterial/connector from I-77 to I-26 over the Broad River) It’s not in any 20 year plans but it seems the “myth” always comes up every few months or so.

3) Richard Franklin Road. Finally! Contracts are being let and a full depth reclamation/resurfacing is expected to be completed by the end of summer.

4) Traffic Light at intersection of Highway 6 and Farming Creek. Work should begin spring 2014.

5) Replacing Shady Grove Bridge (over I-26) with a new 2-lane bridge. Should occur in 2014.

Also slated for 2014:

* Broad River Road (I20 to Koon Road) slated for resurfacing
* Capers Chapel Road – Chipseal resurfacing
* Julius Richardson Road – Thin lift resurfacing
* Lykes Lane – Thin lift resurfacing. (While Lykes Lane is no longer in District 71 after reapportionment, I remember years ago everyone appreciating the traffic signal there and wanted to let them know I haven’t forgotten about them).

Be safe out there! And if you’re curious about funding for our roads. I have offered several proposals to my colleagues before voting to raise your taxes!

COMMUNITY UPDATE: July 2013

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STATE HOUSE
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After narrowly passing the budget in the House (54-52) earlier in June, the House and Senate returned last week to vote (override/sustain) 81 gubernatorial budget vetoes. That is usually the last bit of work we do for the year; therefore after we voted on the vetoes, we adjourned this 1st regular session of the 120th General Assembly.

We will return Tuesday, January 14, 2014 to finish the last year of our two-year session.

As I wrote earlier on the website, no budget is ever perfect . Almost every member has something in the budget he/she doesn’t like and the gubernatorial vetoes are the last chance for us to have impact on the state’s spending priorities. In the years I’ve served, it seems we have sustained more vetoes this year than in years past. A good sign that some things can slowly change in Columbia.

In the coming weeks, I’ll update you on major legislation that became law this year and other legislation that fell short. All bills are “alive” until next year’s session ends so while it’s frustrating important items like Ethics Reform and Department of Adminsitration have not passed both chambers, I do expect them to be debated next year in hopes for passage of the best possible legislation the House, Senate and Governor can agree upon.

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YOUR MONEY
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I’m tired of having to write about the Richland Election Fiasco; but feel a duty to keep everyone informed – especially since local taxpayers are paying $100,000 for the mess (not counting our share of the one-billion dollar tax increase that passed in November – after failing the previous time it was on the ballot).

Hopefully, the billion dollars will be spent wisely and with the most impact for our citizens and business community. Frankly, there are only a few items on the list that are in our area and I will work to see those come to fruition ( the intersection at Kennerly Road and Coogler Road being one of the most needed for safety ).

Every time I see the video of hundreds of you waiting in line , it bothers me more and more how our local Elections Office totally mismanaged the process. I have continued since then to offer solutions and keep voters informed so that future fiascos can be avoided.

Earlier this year, you may recall that the House passed my bill to reduce our precinct sizes in our House District . In the last few weeks of this session, other Richland colleagues wanted their precinct sizes reduced as well, and so we joined together on one county-wide bill that has now become law . With the recent Supreme Court ruling that South Carolina no longer has to get any changes “blessed by Washington”, look for your new voter registration information in early 2014. I will also work with the local Election Office to find additional voting places for these precincts OR may have voting precincts share a facility (example: one precinct votes in cafeteria of school, while another votes in the gymnasium). Obviously, having less people vote at each location (gym, cafeteria, etc) should help reduce the wait times…as well as having an Election Office send the appropriate number of machines out to the voters this time.

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COMMUNITY
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This year’s COMMUNITY COOKOUT is set for August 13th again at the Quarterdeck/Rusty Anchor from 6pm to 7:30 pm. Ever since I was elected, I’ve worked to bring national, state, and local elected officials together for our community to meet and talk with in a casual setting. Be sure to RSVP for this year’s event. BBQ and drinks will be served and music will be provided by Jim LeBlanc! Bring the whole family!

By now, you’ve probably heard about the “Wendover Project” that is applying for tax-credit, low-income housing in the Ballentine area. I will continue to keep you informed and have been working with other elected officials, community leaders, and concerned neighbors to be sure your feedback is heard at the SC State Housing Authority. For the latest update here on my website click here . I believe by the end of the month we will know for sure if tax credits were awarded to the project or not.

Two weeks ago, The Greater Irmo Chamber of Commerce announced their board members for the 2013-2014 year. If you’d like to meet them and other chamber members, plan on attending the next Membership Meeting,Wednesday, July 10th, 11:30 a.m. St. Andrews Presbyterian or signing up for the 2013 Purple Martin Cruise (with Palmetto Health Parkridge and the Spirit of Lake Murray). This annual summer event is set for Monday, July 29th and will set sail at 7:00pm.

The Greater Chapin Chamber of Commerce has their Monthly Membership After Hours & New Member Reception July 16th at Ava’s Copper Pot Bistro from 5:30 – 7:30 pm . They will be welcoming all the new members who have joined the Chamber since last summer so this will be a great opportunity to meet them and learn about their products or services!

Turning to other organizational meetings in the area this month: the Ballentine-Dutch Fork Civic Association has no meetings during the summer.

MEET YOUR NEIGHBOR : Please be sure to email me news of accomplishments of your friends and neighbors in the community! Recent neighbors I’m proud to share with you are: Miriam Atria and the Richland County Sheriff’s Department. I try to regularly update the website with people around town who are doing great things right here in Ballentine, Irmo, Chapin and White Rock. I’m willing to help promote their work/cause and simply need you to let me know what’s going on!

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OUR SCHOOLS
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As I watched 2 of our 3 high schools’ commencement ceremonies, I was again reminded of how good we have it in Lexington/Richland Five. (Missed Irmo’s due to work obligation I couldn’t get away from). I was also pleased to see the recognition of graduates who will be serving our country’s armed forces next year and also seeing one of the ceremonies end with a benediction.

From the District’s website : Lexington-Richland School District Five’s graduating classes of 2013 earned a record number of scholarship offers. The amount totaling more than $125 million includes academic and athletic scholarships for students from Chapin High School, Dutch Fork High School and Irmo High School. More than 1000 District Five students graduated during ceremonies on Friday, June 7.

Chapin High School graduates were offered more than $32 million in college scholarships, said Annette Moore, the school’s guidance director. “This is over $6 million more than last year’s scholarships, and there were three students from this class who were offered full tuition scholarships. Congratulations to all students in the class of 2013!”

At Dutch Fork High, the number of scholarships offered totaled more than $51.7 million. That’s a $2 million increase over 2012 and almost double the school’s scholarship totals in 2011.

Irmo High School’s 2013 graduating students were offered more than $41.8 million in college scholarships, said Robert Taylor, the school’s guidance director.

The scholarship amounts represent awards at four-year, two-year and technical colleges and universities in South Carolina and other states. Scholarships were earned based on several criteria including academic performance, athletics and community service.

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THANK YOU
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Thanks again for the privilege you give me to represent the Irmo/Chapin/Ballentine/Dutch Fork community! If you have events or people you’d like me to share with our community right here through Nathan’s News, please let me know and I’ll do my best to help!

I’m always eager to spend time with you at your Homeowners Association Meetings, Churches, and other civic events in the community! Let me know dates and times and I’ll work to be there!

Nathan Ballentine
803-734-2969
www.nathansnews.com
House of Representatives, District 71
Richland-Lexington Counties
320B Blatt Building
Columbia, SC 29201