Many people have had questions about the bike lane issue in Charleston County. Today, Post and Courier associate editor Elsa McDowell reached out to me with questions via a phone while I was working on the I-526 expansion issue with local media, so I asked her to send me questions. Here are my answers so when a story is published, it’s best for you to know and see my complete answers.
Q: Why do you think there needs to be another study regarding the bridge lane? The bridge has been determined to be structurally sound, and the plan has been determined to be viable.
A: We are not asking for another study to be completed. We are simply asking SCDOT if the bridge is scheduled for replacement soon since it cannot hold a cantilevered bridge section and since they are part of the three party agreement we need their opinion on the viability of the proposed lane closure plan.
Q: Were previous studies, performed by or supervised by the county itself, somehow not correct? And if not, why is council only now coming to that conclusion?
A: We are not questioning the validity of the previously completed studies. We are simply asking SCDOT, who owns the bridge and is charged with providing and maintaining a safe and efficient roadway system, for their opinion of the completed studies before we decide on how we move forward with the project. The SCDOT has the ability to remove the lane closure and therefore we do not want to waste money installing a project that would be quickly removed by SCDOT at our expense.
Q: Is this actually a stalling tactic or even an effort to kill the project?
A: Absolutely Not.
Q: We understand that City Councilman Bill Moody has sought your assistance in stoping the project after City Council’s vote in support of the bikeway. Is that the case? If so, would you describe the circumstances, please? Did you all come to an understanding?
A: He has not asked me to help or hurt this project. I know his position from what I have read in the paper.
Q: Has Mr. Moody’s son, and County Council candidate, Brantley Moody been involved in any discussion with you on this issue?
A:No. Brantley (sic) has spoken in the public comment portion of council meetings.
Q: Also, you wrote to Mayor Tecklenburg that the project is a city project and that the county would proceed only if the city reaffirmed its support for it. City Council did so. Why is the county now dodging its agreement?
A: No one is dodging anything. Like Mr. Schweers expressed during the meeting he is concerned about the structural viability of the bridge. He is an engineer. I hold his opinion in high regard.