MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Officials with Horry County and the City of Myrtle Beach tell WMBF News the new section of Harrelson Boulevard is set to open next Thursday.
The traffic signal at the new intersection with Harrelson and Kings Highway will flash until it's officially open in a week. Contractors say the flashing serves a double purpose: letting drivers know the signal is new, and helping them to work out any kinks before the light becomes fully active.
Construction is part of the county's airport expansion project and when complete drivers will eventually be funneled by the new airport entrance which will open in 2013.
Starting a week from today, drivers will be able to take Harrelson from 17 Bypass to Kings Highway. It provides a direct route through the old Air Force base, avoiding Farrow Parkway and the Backgate construction.
Grand Strand drivers say it's a long time coming.
"It gets so backed up between the North end and the back of the Air Force base so you can sit in traffic sometimes for almost 45 minutes," said Susan Gaudreau.
"Even this summer I had trouble getting around, and I know the secret roads and I had trouble with the secret roads. So maybe it'll take some congestion off the main roads," said Pipa Zygmont.
Between now and its opening Harrelson will receive finishing touches including landscaping and signage.