As roadwork becomes evident on one of Lake Wylie’s busiest highways, project leaders aren’t yet sure when drivers should brace for the six-month detour lengthening their drives.
“We are not sure at this time when the detour will begin,” said Patrick Hamilton, program manager for Pennies for Progress.
A traffic light is up with the signals covered now at Fewell Road and S.C. 274. It’s part of a $35 million project to widen S.C. 274 and Pole Branch Road, approved as part of the 2011 Pennies referendum where York County voters chose to charge a cent sales tax to pay for road construction. Work should wrap up in 2020.
The work begins at Landing Point, just north of the Three Points intersection, and runs up to Pole Branch, following that road to the North Carolina line. A separate, $7.3 million intersection improvement at Three Points — where S.C. 49, 274 and 557 meet — is still under design. A widening of S.C. 557 to five lanes between Kingsburry Road and the intersection is yet another Pennies project. Right-of-way is being acquired for that work.
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The Pole Branch work means drivers will have to take a different route for months.
“There will be a detour the utilizes Fewell Road,” Hamilton said. “Pole Branch Road will be closed between Highway 274 and Fewell Road.”
The detour is scheduled for 180 days. Hamilton doesn’t yet know when that clock will start.
“We are not sure at this time when the detour will begin,” he said. “The contractor is required to give us a 30-day notice prior to closing the road.”
When his group gets that notification, the public will, too.
“We are also planning to have message boards along the road to let people know the closure is coming,” Hamilton said. “We will make sure the closure is highly publicized prior to the detour.”
As for the signal up now, it isn’t permanent.
“The traffic signal at Fewell Road and Highway 274 is a temporary signal and will be removed when the detour is complete,” Hamilton said.