CAROLINA FOREST, (WMBF) – Carolina Forest Boulevard is one of the most congested roads in the Grand Strand, and it gets worse with every new development.
The road is surrounded by one of the fastest growing communities in the area, so homeowners were begging for a road that could accommodate that.
"Traffic has to come to a complete halt every time there's a left turn into one of our communities," explained Bo Ives, President of the Carolina Forest Civic Association.
Ives has battled over permits and waited out the weather, but now his project is ready to break ground. The four month project will add left turn lanes to the Southgate subdivision, the Avalon community, and the entrance to the Horry County Rec Center and Library.
Community members believe the improvements will ease traffic and make the intersections safer. Crews will only work at night to keep traffic on the two lane road flowing.
"There are no convenient detours to Carolina Forest Boulevard, so it's important that we at least keep one lane open," Ives said.
Once the project is over, that won't be the end of the work on the road. A Grand Strand Area Transportation Study recently showed there could be more construction projects in the future.
Carolina Forest Boulevard could become a five lane road with all the bells and whistles you could expect on a major road.
"We'd like to see, ultimately, street lighting along these roadways and a pleasant planting area," said Ives.
He says the plans are far down the road because they still have to secure funding to make it happen. The turn lanes will be a step in the right direction, but without stoplights it could be a hassle to turn onto the road from the neighborhoods.
"We're only half built out here," explains Ives. "If we're having traffic problems now, our concern is once there is further building here, how will we be able to handle it?"