Washington Bypass Update

By: Christine Kennedy
By: Christine Kennedy

It's been over 2 years in the making, the Washington Bypass.

The purpose of the Bypass is simple, to give drivers a faster and safer way to get through Beaufort County and there's good news when it comes to construction.

Department of Transportation officials say the bypass should be opened to the public by the spring of 2010. The actual projected completion date is November of 2010, so things are running ahead of schedule.

The bridge is innovative because it's being built very Eco friendly. There's no work bridge for crews, they put the pilings in by using heavy machinery from the top and then work from there.

When the bridge is completed it will be one of the longest in the state at 3 miles. It's also one of the most expensive with a price tag of 192 million dollars.

D.O.T. Engineers credit great weather and a hardworking crew of about 150 people contracted through Flatiron and United Contractors to getting things built so quickly. This project makes up an even greater picture. There are currently 15 to 20 miles of Highway 17 that are still 2 lane roads and engineers say the overall goal is make Highway 17 four lanes from South Carolina to Virginia.

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