[April 18, 2022]
This morning, Charleston Moves attended the regular meeting of the Charleston Area Transportation Study (CHATS) policy committee, which is staffed by the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments (BCDCOG) and made up of officials from across the 800-square-mile study area. On the agenda was the Ashley River Bicycle and Pedestrian Bridge.
Those of you who follow our updates regularly remember that, earlier this year, City staff warned that COVID and supply chain issues caused the new Ashley River Bicycle & Pedestrian Bridge to exceed previous cost estimates and allotted funding. City staff also suggested the proposed bridge width be reduced to 14′, and the connecting multi-use path to 10′. We at Charleston Moves were disappointed by the news, and as you can imagine, had lots of brainstorming conversations with elected officials.
As it turns out, the City of Charleston, the BCDCOG, and the SCDOT worked together to solve the funding shortage and keep the proposed bridge design at a width of 21′, comfortably accommodating what we know will be a large number of users when the bridge is open. Officials recognize the Ashley River Bike/Ped Bridge is an important safety and legacy project, which is why they worked together to commit the necessary funding from the regional guideshare program.
Ron Mitchum, BCDCOG and CHATS Executive Director: “Our state-level partners recognized the regional significance of the Ashley River Crossing and the excellent plan in place for the project. That was followed today by unanimous regional support from our board. The entire process is a textbook example of the collaboration and consensus we seek to build in these types of projects.”
Mayor John Tecklenburg: “At a moment when our citizens are rightly demanding expanded transportation alternatives, Ashley River Crossing is a true game changer for choice and mobility throughout the region. And on behalf of our city, I’d like to thank Secretary Christy Hall, Director Ron Mitchum and Charleston City Council for their ongoing and critical support of this vital project.”
A joint press release from the City, BCDCOG, and CHATS pointed out that Christy Hall, Secretary of Transportation for SCDOT, said the funding was intended, “to make things happen and get things done,” during today’s board meeting.
We at Charleston Moves are incredibly proud of Mayor Tecklenburg, Charleston City Council, Secretary Hall, and the leadership of BCDCOG and CHATS for continuing to move the new Ashley River Bridge forward with the resources necessary to make it the best project for the most number of people. Everyone deserves transportation choice, and making it safe and enjoyable to cross the Ashley River by bike, foot or assistive device is vital to the success of our region.
Join us to celebrate this milestone at our Bridge Adventure Ride in May » details HERE!