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January 27
SCDOT Closing Four Interstate Rest Areas

Underutilized facilities will be closed to cut costs

               The South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) will close four interstate rest areas on January 27, 2010. The closings are aimed at creating cost savings with minimal impact on the public. The facilities were chosen due to their age and condition, traffic counts and the availability of other restrooms and truck parking nearby. The facilities that were selected are:

 

  • I-95 Florence County. Two rest areas are located at mile marker 171. One is on the northbound lanes and another is on the southbound side of the interstate.
  • I-85 Cherokee County. Located at mile marker 89
  • I-26 Berkeley County. Mile marker 202.

 

The two rest areas on I-95 in Florence were built in 1975. Currently both facilities would require

significant funds to make proper renovations. Water and plumbing problems alone would cost $50,000 to repair. Due to the growth of commercial facilities near these two rest areas, the annual average daily traffic (AADT) has shrunk to approximately 1,000 vehicles. The statewide average is 1,450 vehicles per day. In addition, these two facilities only provide seven truck parking spaces.

 

               The I-85 rest area in Cherokee County slated for closing was built in 1987. The facility is in good condition. However, the development that has taken place on this section of I-85 has provided travelers with numerous choices of commercial facilities. As growth has occurred, the daily traffic count at this rest area  has dropped to 900 vehicles.

 

               The rest area on I-26 in Berkeley County is the oldest of the facilities scheduled for closing. This rest area was built in 1970 and is in very poor condition, No renovations have ever occurred at this facility. Though the site will be closed, SCDOT will have the option of re-opening it temporarily in the event of a hurricane evacuation.

 

               SCDOT would prefer not to reduce the number of service facilities on our highways. However, increasing costs to maintain these four facilities, coupled with the low volume of drivers who are using them has led to the decision to use the agency’s limited funds on transportation needs with higher priorities.

 

 

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PHOTOS:
http://www.scdot-transfer.org/scdotphotos/2010RestAreaFlo95.jpg

http://www.scdot-transfer.org/scdotphotos/2010RestAreaFlo95NoWater.jpg

 

Two rest areas on opposite sides of I-95 in Florence County at the intersection of I-95 and SC 327 are being closed along with two other facilities in the state. The Florence facilities lost water due to a water line break. Rather than repairing them prior to closing, portable toilets were used for travelers prior to the closing.