HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Headache, nightmare…no matter how you describe it there's no denying getting to the south end of Horry County takes some strategy when it comes to planning your drive. The lane switch that's part of the new interchange at Glenns Bay Road and the new Highway 17 overpass is delayed again.
Good news, though, Horry County spokeswoman Lisa Bourcier said it shouldn't delay the overall project finish estimation of winter 2018.
The lane switch was supposed to happen Sunday. Now, officials said it'll probably happen right after Labor day. The date change is to accommodate peak tourist season traffic. South Carolina Department of Transportation officials are meeting this week to finalize those plans, Bourcier said.
When the shift happens, the southbound Highway 17 lane will curve through Holmestown Road, west of the new Highway 17 overpass. Eventually, the northbound lane will do the same, but curve east towards Glenns Bay Road. This is being done for the overpass.
It's exactly what was done at the Market Common Interchange a few years go. WMBF News reporter Meredith Helline spoke with people who understand that, and hope they get the same results, too.
"You put more people, you put more cars on the road, you're going to get more traffic," annual tourist Bruce Hutchison said. "Traffic in Myrtle Beach is a timing issue. Sometimes when you get down here if you hit the wrong time of day or wrong day of the week, like coming in say midday on a Saturday, you are going to be bottled up for a quite a while getting from the north end to the south end," he added.
"Yeah it's inconvenient, no doubt about that. But I think it's just one of those things you have to put up with. It's just like security at the airport...if you want to be secure you have to put in more time. So it works out," local Bill Cummings said.
A portion of the entire $80 million dollar project budget will extend most of Glenns Bay Road to five lanes. The two and a half year project's majority of work on Glenns Bay is underground.