Work to begin on extension of SC-31 and Hwy 707 widening - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Work to begin on extension of SC-31 and Hwy 707 widening

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HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Big announcements were made at the Horry County Council meeting Tuesday night in regards to two major road projects. SCDOT Regional Production Manager Mike Barbee told council both projects are expected to be complete in Spring 2017.

Barbee said on May 24, 2013 a permit was granted for each project by the Army Corps of Engineers.

"The next points in each project will be to let it out to contract, let the contractors bid on it and then give a notice to proceed to that contractor," Barbee said.

The following is an explanation of what the extension on SC-31, or Carolina Bays Parkway will entail, according to Barbee:

Extension from current terminus at SC 544 to SC 707, a distance of approximately 3.8 miles. The proposed project is a new location, multilane freeway facility with a grassed median that will include a bridge over the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, a partial interchange at SC 544 and a full interchange at SC 707.

SCDOT is providing program and project management services through a 3-party intergovernmental agreement (IGA), between Horry County, the State Transportation Infrastructure Bank, and SCDOT signed on June 20, 2007.

The following is an explanation of what the widening of Highway 707 will entail, according to Mike Barbee:

Widening from a 2-lane shoulder section to a 5-lane curb and gutter facility with sidewalks from just south of Enterprise Road (S-26-926) in Horry County to US Route 17 in Georgetown County, a distance of approximately 9.2 miles. 

SCDOT is providing program and project management services through a 2-party intergovernmental agreement (IGA), between Horry County and SCDOT signed on June 22, 2007.

According to Barbee, the following is a status update of both projects as of June 2013.

Carolina Bays Parkway

  • Preliminary Engineering complete
  • Right of Way Acquisition complete
  • May 24, 2013: A combined Carolina Bays Parkway/ SC 707 permit was approved by the US Army Corps of Engineers

      SC 707 Widening

  • Preliminary Engineering Complete
  • Right of Way acquisition 95% complete
  • May 24, 2013: A combined Carolina Bays Parkway/ SC 707 permit was approved by the US Army Corps of Engineers

Barbee said the projects have been delayed two years. As a result, the following is an estimated breakdown of how the delay is effecting the costs of the projects(according to Barbee):

Carolina Bays Parkway

  • Approximately $15M due to construction cost escalation
  • Approximately $640,000 in additional engineering fees

 

       SC 707 Widening

  • Approximately  $5.4M due to construction cost escalation

 

Barbee said at this point, as long as there aren't any appeals or delays, the construction phases can begin.

"There's nothing foreseeable at this point that would prevent us from starting construction. The receipt from the US Army Corps of Engineers is usually the last step," Barbee said.

Horry County Council Spokesperson Lisa Bourcier said Tuesday's announcement means work on the other project's that are a part of the Riding on a Penny sales tax initiative can begin.

"Next we're able to concentrate on the Glenns Bay widening project as well as the interchange that'll go at Holmestown and Glenns Bay Road and the mostly anticipated thoroughfare of International Drive going from Carolina Forest to Highway 90," Bourcier said.

Bourcier said once the bids on the SC 31 and Highway 707 projects are priced, SCDOT can start working on getting permits for the last two major projects and as long as there's enough money left in the $425 million budget, those projects will get finished.

"We do believe we have enough funding to do all the projects that the taxpayers passed," Bourcier said.

Copyright 2013 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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