Feb 10 2013

Bridge Construction Update

Feeling like the bridge construction on the trip to Folly might never end? Don’t worry, great progress is being made, and soon the trip on and off the island will be smoother than ever.

The new bridges will cross Folly Creek and the Folly River. And while they’ll keep the same two-lane traffic pattern, they will be vast improvements over the current bridges. The bridges will be higher an wider than the current bridges, which leaves room for wider traffic lanes (12 feet), 5-foot-wide bicycle paths, and 5-and-a-half-foot raised sidewalks on the rail sides. In addition, the Folly River bridge will have streetlights on Center Street. The bridges will also have a slight eastward curve to them, and each bridge will offer a higher clearance to boats, especially during high tide.

Right now, Cape Romain Contractors, based in Wando, South Carolina, is working on the bridges’ foundations. Each foundation must be sunk through 55 to 60 feet of sand and muck into the class. And then it must be pressed in an additional 30 to 40 feet to insure stability for years to come. If you drive past, check out the huge tubes that hold the cement. Eventually, the tubes will rust away, leaving the cement columns to hold the bridges in place. Construction has to be carefully planned each day, taking traffic and the tides into careful consideration.

If all goes according to plan, then the Folly Creek bridge will be complete by July 2014. The Folly River bridge’s anticipated completion date is a little later, January 2015. Once the traffic has been diverted and moved, the old bridges will be torn down.

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