COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - One of the most heavily traveled intersections in Columbia is about to receive a one-point-six-billion-dollar makeover.
We are talking about Malfunction Junction, the stretch of highway along the I-20, I-26, and I-126 corridors.
For years, the poorly designed interchange has caused rush hour traffic to turn into a parking lot.
According to the South Carolina Department of Transportation, more drivers crash in Malfunction Junction than any other highway system in the state.
But a change is coming, the plan dubbed as the “Carolina Crossroads Project” is set to redesign the dangerous bottleneck starting this fall and be completed by 2029.
Brian Klauk, Project Manager for Carolina Crossroads spoke to WIS about the plan.
“We’re eliminating many of the movements that we call weaves. Where cars try and get and off in a short stretch of interstate, eliminating loops where I-20 and I-26 cross. And we are adding an extra lane in each direction on I-26. So that should have a significant change to the congestion and improve safety.”
The five-phase project is expected to address the choke points that plague the entire junction. That is 14 miles of highway receiving an upgrade.
So what does this mean for you?
“We expect the project to save the average driver 112 hours per year that they otherwise would have been sitting in traffic. So, it is a significant improvement, and we look forward to giving that time back to the citizens in the state.”
Malfunction Junction will not lose its reputation soon, but we hope the much-needed facelift becomes an attractive gateway in and out of the Midlands.
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