Anderson Co. roundabout construction raises concerns

Local News

ANDERSON COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – A construction project is underway to improve an intersection in Anderson County.

According to SCDOT, the purpose of the project is to reduce the frequency and severity of accidents at the intersection of US 178 (Liberty Highway) and SC-88 (Old Greenville Highway Ext.). However, people are concerned with the recent spike in crashes in the area during construction.

SCDOT is converting a former four-way stop into a single-lane roundabout in an effort to reduce accidents. The renovation follows data-driven research pinpointing the intersection for its high crash rates. According to the state, the new design was created to slow traffic while allowing it to move more freely.

Throughout the construction process, people in the area said they have seen a number of recent accidents, including at least two this past weekend. According to a project manager, carelessness by drivers has caused major damage to recent renovations, forcing them to replace parts of the curb and other materials.

“There’s just a lot of people not paying attention. I mean, it’s nothing we are doing. We’ve got all of our signs up, all of the lines painted, all of the traffic control and our stage too which is what you have to do right now. I just think people aren’t used to it,” said Tyler Sease, project manager.

According to the state’s Traffic Safety Office, in a recent study, crashes with injuries reduced by 79% at intersections converted to roundabouts and total crashes reduced by 64%.

While the study is pleasing, those working on the project have concerns with whether or not people are paying attention and following the speed limit while they are making the upgrade.

“I’ve been out here late at night quite a few nights and tried to direct traffic and people are speeding and not abiding by our 20 mile per hour,” said Sease.

Concerns continue for those working along side of the roads, as well as drivers who travel on them.

“It’s kind of hectic around here right now so it’s kind of hard to move and get around,” said driver David Pinkerd. “Be mindful, watch out, slow down, you know, respect everybody.”

Which in return, is leaving both drivers and road-side workers with the same message: “Key word, be cautious,” said driver Joshua Hughes.

Project leaders said they plan to have construction fully complete by Spring of next year. Until then, they urge you to slow down and proceed with caution.

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