HomeSouth CarolinaSouth Carolina Department of Transportation allocates $719 million for road improvements

South Carolina Department of Transportation allocates $719 million for road improvements

Columbia, South Carolina – The South Carolina Department of Transportation Commission recently decided to allocate an additional $719 million for road surface improvements throughout the state. This funding is part of the 2025 Pavement Improvement Program and adds to the already committed $3.6 billion from tax revenues for similar upgrades since 2018. This decision means an extension of roadwork by 727 miles, on top of the 8,800 miles where work is already underway or finished.

Back in 2017, state legislators approved an increase in vehicle fees and the state gas tax, which was expected to bring in a substantial amount of extra funds. Following this, the agency embarked on a strategic plan slated to last ten years, targeting key areas such as highway safety, bridge strengthening, road resurfacing, and expanding interstate capacity.

“There is no question that the transportation system in South Carolina is critical to our future as a state and to the prosperity of all South Carolinians,” Secretary of Transportation Justin P. Powell said in a statement. “With the implementation of the Strategic 10-Year Plan in 2018, we invested a significant amount of the new gas tax in improving our pavements and catching up on more than 30 years of deferred maintenance on our system.”

The decision to continue investing in infrastructure was spurred by what officials described as a “steady and reliable source of income.” Earlier in the year, Governor Henry McMaster, a Republican, emphasized that focusing on road improvements, especially bridge repairs, would be central to his budget agenda. This priority is underscored by the state’s low grades in infrastructure, with the American Society of Civil Engineers rating South Carolina’s overall infrastructure a D plus in 2021, and its roads a D.

Read also: Santee Cooper unveils $10.8 million resilience grants to enhance South Carolina’s power grid

SCDOT recently decided to allocate an additional $719 million for road surface improvements throughout the state
Courtesy of SCDOT

“As the population and tourism industry increase, so do Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) which contributes to more traffic congestion and pavement wear,” the group said. “South Carolina has undertaken several initiatives to address the major concerns of the transportation infrastructure, but with more than half the roads in poor condition, the highest fatality rate in the U.S., and almost 20% increase in VMT, there is a significant need for additional funding, especially towards addressing capacity and safety.”

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