The last two-digit Interstate completed in the Palmetto State was Interstate 77. The highway links the capital city of Columbia with Rock Hill and Charlotte, North Carolina to the north, paralleling U.S. 21 for much of that route.
Originally Interstate 77 concluded at the area of Interstate 20 and South Carolina 277 near Dentwood. Road work through the 1980s and early 1990s extended the the designation along the Southeastern Beltway to Interstate 26 at Cayce at a cost of more than $100-million:5
- Interstate 26 to S.C. 48 (Bluff Road) - August 1986.1
- Interstate 20 to S.C. 12 (Percival Road) - December 15, 1987 at a cost of $5.25 million after an additional lane in each direction was added.1
- S.C. 48 (Bluff Road) to U.S. 76 & 378 (Garners Ferry Road) - work started in November 1986 on the $21-million, 3.3-mile phase opened in 1989.4
- U.S. 76 & 378 (Garners Ferry Road) to S.C. 760 (Fort Jackson Boulevard) - July 17, 19922 at a cost of $21-million for 2.6 miles of roadway.4
- S.C. 760 (Fort Jackson Boulevard) to Imboden Street (renamed Strom Thurmond Boulevard in 1995) - 1.6 mile stretch April 1993 at a cost of $8.4 million4
- Imboden Street (Strom Thurmond Boulevard) to S.C. 12 (Percival Road) - $21-million contract awarded on the 2.8-mile stretch in October 19914. A 1.5-mile stretch between Strom Thurmond Boulevard and Decker Boulevard opened on March 10, 1995.5 The Southeastern Beltway was completed with a ribbon-joining ceremony on June 15, 1995.6
Until the Southeastern Beltway was completed in 1995, the stretch of freeway south of Interstate 20 was designated as South Carolina 478. Early 80s highway maps show the portion of freeway first opened between I-26 and S.C. 48 as Interstate 326, though this designation was never signed in the field. Temporary Interstate 77 shields were posted along S.C. 277, I-20, and I-26 when a member of AARoads passed through in August 1988.
Interstate 77 South Carolina Guides
|A rural diamond interchange connects S.C. 97 (Great Falls Road) with Interstate 77 in southern Chester County. This shield assembly directs motorists from S.C. 97 north onto I-77 south to Winnsboro and Columbia. Photo taken 06/01/07.|
- "I-77 EXTENSION SET TO OPEN IN TWO WEEKS DRIVERS GAIN ACCESS TO PERCIVAL." The State (Columbia, SC), December 4, 1987.
- "A NEW ROUTE BELTWAY SECTION LINKING FORT, GARNERS FERRY TO OPEN FRIDAY." The State (Columbia, SC), July 16, 1992.
- "BELTWAY'S WRAP-UP DATE IS JUNE 1995 IMBODEN-TO-I-77 WORK SAID TO BE ON SCHEDULE." The State (Columbia, SC), December 11, 1993.
- "BELTWAY PHASE 4 SET TO OPEN SOON CREWS APPLYING FINISHING TOUCHES." The State (Columbia, SC), April 4, 1993.
- "SEGMENT OF BELTWAY SET TO OPEN." The State (Columbia, SC), March 1, 1995.
- "A GRAND OPENING BELTWAY'S FINAL LINK OPENS." The State (Columbia, SC), June 16, 1995.
06/01/07 by AARoads
Page Updated 09-18-2014.