A 20-year old state highway plan focused on extending the S.C. 277 freeway southwest from its end at Harden Street Extension to Elmwood Avenue at Wayne Street, and southward along Wayne Street as a boulevard to Gervais Street (U.S. 1) by downtown Columbia. The 6.3-mile north-south corridor was slated for potential construction in 1993 and take ten years to complete.1,2 Columbia City Council would block the project formally in December 1993.3
Passing over South Carolina 277 a half mile north of the S.C. 555 (Farrow Road) interchange is the Congressman James E. Clyburn Pedestrian Overpass. The crossing was erected to provide a safe way for residents and children to cross S.C. 277 between Lester Drive and Busby Street. Eight lives were lost at the location by pedestrians crossing the freeway over a 30-year period.5 Congressman Clyburn visited the site on April 7, 1988 and supported the walkway as part of a $91-million federal aid package.4 Work on the $4-million structure commenced in March 2002, with its opening on March 23, 2003. Towers on the structure were modeled after the nearby tower of former Eau Claire City Hall.5
Speed limits along a five-mile stretch of South Carolina 277 were cut from 65 to 60 miles per hour between Interstate 77 and S.C. 555 on February 19, 2001 in an effort to cut the number of traffic accidents as recommended by DOT engineers.5 Speed limits currently drop to 55 southbound at the Congressman James E. Clyburn Pedestrian Overpass.
- "NORTH-SOUTH CORRIDOR IS STILL ON TABLE." The State (Columbia, SC), July 6, 1989.
- "COUNCIL NEAR VOTE ON FREEWAY." The State (Columbia, SC), February 28, 1991.
- "CITY ERECTS ROADBLOCK TO CONNECTOR LAND SALE COULD END WAYNE STREET PROJECT." The State (Columbia, SC), December 22, 1993.
- "RESIDENTS HOPE FOR BRIDGE OFFICIALS TO VISIT 277 'SHORTCUT' TODAY." The State (Columbia, SC), April 7, 1998.
- "$4 MILLION PROJECT COMPLETED -- WALKWAY TO MAKE FOR SAFER TRIP." The State (Columbia, SC), March 24, 2003.
- "S.C. 277 SPEED LIMITS TO BE CUT." The State (Columbia, SC), February 1, 2001.
Page Updated 04-18-2012.