International Drive set to open in March, 2018

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HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – The highly anticipated and controversial International Drive is nearly completed, with a new completion date of March, 2018.

International Drive has been in the works for over a decade, after voters approved the project in 2006 as a sales tax referendum. The 5.6 mile stretch of road will run between Carolina Forest and S.C. 90, giving those who live in Conway easy access to the beach while avoiding Highway 501, and another evacuation route to those who live closer to the beach.

It was one year ago that a coastal conservation group wanted the construction shut down because they said it threatened the wetlands. The county fought back and the lawsuit was dropped in April of this year.

Some Carolina Forest residents acknowledge the need for the road, but say they’re very concerned for the traffic it will bring.

“Eventually they’ll probably need to install traffic lights….it will be safer that way for kids to cross the street, for people to turn into the neighborhood or go straight to International Drive,” said Paiwen Buckley, who lives in The Farm of Carolina Forest.

In Carolina Forest, International Drive begins at a popular intersection with a school and neighborhood. During school drop-off and dismissal, traffic is a huge concern.

“School hours…the traffic is really really busy… and many kids are walkers from school. How can they handle the conditions when school is over? We have no idea,” said Jessica Yan.

International Drive still needs storm drains and a stone base before being paved.

WMBF News will keep you updated on any new developments on construction.

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