Friday, December 14 2012 9:26 AM EST2012-12-14 14:26:56 GMT
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- In a 5-4 vote Thursday night, Charleston County Council decided to keep control of the I-526 project instead of handing it off to the City of Charleston. Stay connected to ABCNews4More >>
The Charleston County Council approved in a 5-4 vote to continue plans to extend I-526. More >>
By Ava Wilhite firstname.lastname@example.org
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Before rush hour there is a clear traffic backup on Highway 17 in West Ashley.
"It creates a huge traffic jam in this area, where I-526 will relieve it. That's why the people in this district particularly are so adamant about wanting this fixed," says City Councilman Bill Moody.
Moody says the completion of I-526 will fix traffic issues, specifically in his district. He says District 11 will be ground zero for the highway - one reason why the City of Charleston should sponsor the project.
"Basically the whole project is in the city, so why shouldn't the city be responsible forgetting it done," says Moody.
Mayor Joe Riley is asking Moody and the rest of city council to vote on a resolution asking the Charleston County Council to turn over the project.
"It seems that's its a reasonable passing of the baton to the government in which the highway is located," says Riley.
Riley says it's city taxpayers that would be most affected if it's not built and city taxpayers who want the completion.
"Seventy-two percent of the citizens are in favor of it. A vast majority of the citizens on Johns Island and James Island are in favor of it, West Ashley too. The citizens want it," says Riley.
Riley says the completion of 526 is fully funded by the state infrastructure bank for $558 million, an amount he says is enough to finish the job.
"We will be on the line for cost over-runs if there are any," says Moody.
The city council will take a vote at their regular meeting Nov. 13.
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