Benton Boulevard Extension Project on schedule despite weather delays

Benton Boulevard Extension Project on schedule despite weather delays
Source: WTOC

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Drivers on State Route 21 near the Effingham/Chatham County line can experience heavy traffic during peak travel times, but another option is on the way.

Chatham County engineers say despite the recent rain, they are still on schedule to have the Benton Boulevard Extension Project completed in 2020.

This is going to be a welcome change for so many people because it will become a new route for people who get stuck in traffic along current major roads.

Right now, Benton Boulevard begins at Pooler Parkway and runs north to Highlands Boulevard. After this project is completed, Benton Boulevard will run all the way to Highway 30 in Port Wentworth.

In the spring of this year, crews started clearing trees near the Highlands Boulevard area, so they could begin bringing in the dirt to start outlining the roads.

Chatham County engineers said the recent rain did stop crews from doing some of the work this month, but they're still running on schedule with a completion date around August of 2020.

"It’ll be really good for the residents in that part of the county and those in Effingham, and it gives them an alternative to State Route 21,” Chatham County Senior Transportation Engineer Pamela Bernard said.

Bernard said there are three phases to this project.

The first phase, clearing the tree line, just wrapped up. Now crews are beginning to move in dirt and create the foundation for this new section of the road.

Once that’s completed, crews will move to Phase Three which is some drainage work and paving the actual road.

Bernard said during the final phase, crews will also do some widening work on Highlands Boulevard which was requested by the city.

This project’s price tag is set around $10.5 million. The county is using SPLOST dollars for the project. Voters approved using the money for this project in the 2002 SPLOST vote.

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