We’ve been seeing road improvements in the area for years, and soon, the biggest improvement of them all is coming our way. Not just the fix for Malfunction Junction, improvements on out towards the Peak, Little Mountain and Newberry area.
From The State
Overshadowed by the S.C. Department of Transportation’s massive $1.5 billion effort to untangle Columbia’s notorious “Malfunction Junction” interchange at I-20, I-26 and I-126 is another big highway improvement project.
Beginning in 2020 and ending fours years later, workers will widen I-26 for 16 miles from Broad River Road northwest to Little Mountain. That widening project would link with the Malfunction Junction project — officially called Carolina Crossroads — at Exit 101, Broad River Road.
Both projects are expected to begin in 2020.
Although public hearings have been held on the extended I-26 widening project, many folks who regularly roll up to Greenville and Spartanburg from the capital city, or vice versa, probably don’t know that their trek is going to be more difficult for a long time before it gets a lot better.
“We’re flying under the radar a little,” project manager Michael Hood said.
The $530 million project begins at Exit 101, which is U.S. 176., in Irmo. That’s where the Malfunction Junction project will end.
The existing two lanes on each side of the highway will be widened to four lanes for a total eight-lane section of highway to Broad River Road, which is the Peak exit.
The road will be widened to six lanes for the remaining 12 miles from U.S. 176 to S.C. 202 at Little Mountain. Future plans envision a widened highway all the way to Newberry.