Apr. 30—Many local motorists have found themselves stuck in traffic on Hitchcock Parkway in the last week due to ongoing road work, but the delays aren't expected to last too much longer.
Major traffic delays should settle down in about 10 days, according to Aiken Chamber of Commerce President and CEO J. David Jameson, citing information he received from the S.C. Department of Transportation on Friday.
Jameson said he made an inquiry to SCDOT because the chamber was receiving lots of phone calls about the traffic issues.
"What they're doing now is re-patching and some light resurfacing work to make the road smoother, and that's what's holding up the lanes," Jameson told the Aiken Standard. "There's no way around it. There's not a good alternate route to detour people around, but it will diminish substantially in about two weeks."
After that time period, there will still be some delays as work continues, "but nothing near like what folks are experiencing this week," Jameson said.
The full project will cost more than $9.2 million and will add a series of safety and traffic improvements, including new turning lanes and signal lights.
The full scope of the project includes resurfacing the entire corridor from U.S. 1/Jefferson Davis Highway to Silver Bluff Road; the addition of a shared-use path from Silver Bluff Road to Huntsman Drive; and improvements to five intersections along Hitchcock Parkway corridor.
The five intersections are Augusta Road, Dibble Road, Huntsman Drive, Hickory Ridge Road/Oriole Street and Silver Bluff Road.
Jameson also said SCDOT mentioned it has been questioned about why the current work isn't being done at night when the road is less busy.
During the public comment time, when (SCDOT was) trying to decide what improvements to make to the road, the neighborhoods surrounding Hitchcock Parkway made it very clear that they did not want construction work done at night because that would be disruptive to their sleep," Jameson said. "So, they're trying to respect the feedback that they got."
The estimated completion date of the entire project is December 2022.