MT. PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – Construction on a new road project in Mt. Pleasant connecting Highway 17 at Longpoint Road to Rifle Range Road is slated to begin in April.

It aims to alleviate some traffic congestion in town by creating another access point and giving drivers an opportunity to spread out.

The project would create an alternative entrance to Longpoint Road a few hundred feet from the current one. It would then connect across Highway 17 to Old Georgetown Road and run through the wooded area near Christ Church Mt. Pleasant and open at a traffic circle on Rifle Range Road.

“I think it’s gonna help eliminate some of the traffic that goes through there. People will be able to cut through a little bit easier,” said Councilman Gary Santos.

With the town continuously growing leading to worsening traffic congestion, Santos says the project is needed now.

“It’ll just give us another opportunity to have an access point there that might relieve some of the congestion on those other points.”

However, one neighbor on Longpoint Road, Kirk Beilke, is concerned that the project will lead to more traffic on Longpoint because more drivers will use it as a cut-through to get to 526. He says traffic is already very heavy on the road.

“Now it’s just a thru-way, a belt way…like a 526 really,” said Beilke. “The most ignored signs are no thru traffic and 35 miles per hour.”

Beilke says the road is often backed up during rush hour and if Boone Hall Plantation is having an event.

“I’m sure it’ll be put exactly where they want it, however that’s just gonna put more traffic on Longpoint Road.”

Town leaders are optimistic for the opposite effect.

Additionally, once the road work is completed, two parks will be built in the area to ramp up recreation opportunities in town.

“We’re looking at putting fields out there. Hopefully some pickle ball courts,” said Santos.

Construction on the connector is slated to begin in April 2022 and be completed in October 2023.

For more information on the project, click here.