New intersection planned for S. Anderson Road at E. Main Street in Rock Hill

The intersection of South Anderson Road (also known as U.S. 21 Bypass) and East Main Street in Rock Hill will soon be have a traditional “T” configuration controlled by a stop light.

The state and York County will combine road safety funds with money raised by the 1-cent “Pennies For Progress” sales tax for the almost $4 million project. The majority of the funding – $3.6 million – is coming from the Pennies program while $350,000 is coming from the S.C. Department of Transportation.

The York County Council approved an agreement with the state at Monday’s meeting.

The intersection is currently two separate triangles.

One triangle involves southbound traffic on South Anderson Road and westbound on East Main Street.

South Anderson traffic must cross over the two lanes of westbound traffic on East Main before merging with eastbound traffic.

Westbound traffic wanting to head north on South Anderson Road has to exit to the right through a gentle curve.

The second triangle is the intersection of East Main and Cowan Road. Eastbound traffic on East Main wanting to reach South Anderson Road, must cross over westbound traffic onto Cowan Road and then turn left onto South Anderson Road.

The plan is to close both triangles and build a “T” intersection about 1,500 feet west of the South Anderson-East Main intersection.

The state will soon begin acquiring land for the project, said Phil Leazer, Pennies program manager.

Leazer said the change is being done for traffic safety. In recent years there have been 57 accidents at the intersection and two fatalities from a 2007 accident.

Leazer said he hoped construction could start in about eight months.

Leazer said the new intersection should not only help traffic, but also provide a boost to existing businesses.

Carl Jackson, 81, owner of the Exxon station at one of the triangle intersections, isn’t so sure. He said changes will likely cost him customers, especially those traveling north on South Anderson Road. Most of his customers are local residents, he said.

The station has been operating from the location since 1943, he said. Jackson said the intersection changes might make it harder to sell his land, too.