International Drive is on schedule for completion by March 27, exactly one year after the county prevailed in a series of lawsuits that sought to block construction of the road and new development expected to trail along behind it.
A majority of the storm drains have been installed and utility relocation work is ongoing. Constructions workers will begin to excavate and grade the roadway this fall, while also building the curbs, gutters and sidewalks, said Lisa Bourcier, Horry County spokeswoman.
There were few workers on the five-mile road construction site Thursday afternoon, but previous work on the storm drains was clearly evident.
“They’ve got people out there working,” Bourcier said.
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While the work is on schedule for the actual contract, construction of all RIDE II projects including International Drive was initially delayed for years because of opposition from environmental activists over the widening of S.C. Highway 707 and Carolina Bays extension.
Ride II was passed by voters in 2006. International Drive and as well as the Highway 707, Carolina Bays and Glenns Bay construction are the only projects still under construction.
Once the permits were finally issued for International Drive in 2015, environmentalists directly blocked that construction through state and federal court challenges.
Although the contract calls for completion in March, some Horry County officials have speculated the work could actually be completed and the road opened earlier than scheduled.