Drop-in Event to Highlight Transportation Projects, Resources in County

Richland County’s North Main Street Widening Set for Ribbon Cutting

(Richland PIO) – Richland County will soon open a 1.7-mile stretch of North Main Street, the culmination of a multi-phase Penny project. Construction on the project extends from Anthony Avenue to Fuller Avenue, just north of downtown Columbia.

In addition to widening and repaving the stretch of roadway, upgrades from the work include:

  • Improved intersections, particularly at North Main Street and Monticello Road
  • Imprinted and textured pavement stamping for designated crosswalks
  • Landscaping improvements
  • Street lighting to improve nighttime safety
  • Improved pedestrian routes
  • Overhead utilities relocated underground

“The construction phases for the widening and intersection project were a culmination of efforts by many professionals,” said Michael Maloney, Richland County Transportation director. “The City of Columbia commissioned the design, and the Richland County Penny brought it to construction. The many entities involved have delivered a great improvement.”

In addition to $35.4 million in funding from the County’s Penny program, this project was also funded through:

  • $16.7 million from a federal TIGER discretionary grant
  • $1.3 million from federal legislation
  • $5.8 million from the City of Columbia for water and sewer work

At a news conference at 11 a.m. Monday, April 24, County representatives, Transportation staff and other local leaders will share details from the project while offering insight and answering questions. The news conference will be at 950 Jackson Ave., Columbia, with parking available at Hyatt Park.

To arrange coverage, email Susan O’Cain, Richland County’s director of communications, by 5 p.m. Friday, April 21: o’cain.susan@richlandcountysc.gov.

For more about Transportation improvements, visit www.richlandcountysc.gov/transportation or call 844-RCPENNY.

Richland County to Begin Project to Widen Blythewood Road

(Richland PIO) – Richland County is set to announce plans to upgrade and widen Blythewood Road as part of a $15.6 million Penny project to boost road safety in Northeast Richland.

The roadwork will extend west from Blythewood Road’s intersection with I-77 to Syrup Mill Road, about 0.8 miles. Improvements include widening the two-lane stretch of road to four lanes and adding a 15-foot turning median, as well as adding 10-foot shared-use paths both sides of the road.

At a news conference set for 11 a.m. Thursday, March 30, County representatives and Transportation staff will share plans on the project while offering insight and answering questions. The news conference will be at the Richland County Public Works entrance at 437 Blythewood Road, Blythewood.

The County will release more details on the project at this news conference. To arrange coverage, contact Susan O’Cain, Richland County’s director of communications, by 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 29: 803-576-2065 or o’cain.susan@richlandcountysc.gov.

Improving Road Capacity and Safety

A separate upgrade of the widening project involves building a multi-lane roundabout at the entrance of Cobblestone Park Golf Club, just off Blythewood Road.

With the upgrades, the County aims to increase Blythewood Road’s capacity, allowing for more vehicles to travel the area and, by adding a dedicated left-turn lane, cutting wait time for vehicles to turn there. As an added benefit, the new shared-use paths will allow pedestrians, bikes and small vehicles to access Blythewood Road without affecting traffic.

The roadwork will take place from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. from April 3 until April 5, 2025. The County expects one lane to be open in each direction while work is ongoing; temporary delays for drivers are possible. The 35 mph speed limit will not change.

For more about Transportation improvements, visit www.richlandcountysc.gov/transportation or call 844-RCPENNY.


“I am eager and excited to see this much-needed Penny project begin in the Town of Blythewood. These upgrades will benefit our residents, as well as making our community safer and more inviting for commuters, pedestrians and cyclists.” – Derrek Pugh, Councilman, Richland District 2

“This roadway is being upgraded due to the opportunity for increased jobs and residents in the area. The project increases the roadway’s capacity to handle additional traffic, while also providing new shared-use paths.” – Michael Maloney, Richland County Transportation director

“Relieving Blythewood Road congestion with additional lanes, wide sidewalks and a traffic circle is the first step in the process of improving overall traffic flow in our rapidly growing community. This has been a need for our community for many years, and I am proud we are finally able to deliver on our promises to begin optimizing our aged and outdated infrastructure.” – Bryan Franklin, Town of Blythewood mayor

Richland County to Begin Enhancements at Bull Street, Elmwood Avenue

(Richland PIO) – Richland County will soon unveil plans for upcoming improvements at a busy downtown intersection, boosting safety for drivers and pedestrians and shifting a major Penny program project into the construction phase.

On Thursday, Dec. 8, the County will share plans to improve traffic flow and safety at Bull Street and Elmwood Avenue in Columbia. At a news conference set for 11 a.m. near the entrance of the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control on Bull Street, County representatives and Transportation staff will offer insight on the project and answer questions.

Richland County will release more details on the project at the news conference Dec. 8. To arrange coverage, contact Susan O’Cain, the County’s director of communications: 803-576-2065 or o’cain.susan@richlandcountysc.gov.

Safety Benefits, Reduced Delays

Benefits of the project include an estimated reduction in driver wait times of nearly 60 percent, which should result in fewer cars waiting for traffic signals to change, as well as increased safety.

“There is a significant delay reduction for this intersection,” said Michael Maloney, Richland County Transportation director. “That will provide an immediate improvement by allowing more commuters and downtown patrons through the intersection, but it also will accommodate growth in the area for years to come.”

The project involves adding a lane to the eastbound side of Elmwood Avenue, creating a dedicated straight lane across the intersection with Bull Street.

The existing southbound right-turn lane from Bull Street to Elmwood Avenue will be channelized to allow traffic to continue to flow through. Bull Street will also be restriped to add an additional northbound through lane and remove a southbound dedicated right-turn lane onto Calhoun Street.

“The improvements to this intersection are going to be crucial as the Bull Street District continues to grow,” said Councilman Paul Livingston, District 4. “With more businesses and visitors coming to this area, these changes will ensure continued access for both drivers and pedestrians.”

Other improvements from the project include:

  • resurfacing and restriping roads
  • improving drainage
  • adding landscaping along Elmwood Avenue
  • upgrading traffic signals
  • constructing, removing and rebuilding concrete islands
  • improving pedestrian crossings

“This intersection is a major thoroughfare for many Richland County residents, and it is particularly busy during peak commuting hours in the morning and evening,” said Councilwoman Jesica Mackey, who chairs the County’s Transportation Ad Hoc Committee and represents District 9. “These improvements are going to help that traffic flow more efficiently, which will benefit a great deal of people and the businesses in the surrounding area.”

For more about Transportation improvements, visit www.richlandcountysc.gov/transportation or call 844-RCPENNY.

Concrete Progress: Improvements to North Main Intersection Resume

(Richland PIO) – The County is finishing upgrades to the intersection of North Main Street and Monticello Road, as a revitalization project on North Main begins its final phase.

Last week, crews contracted by Richland County Transportation began preparing deteriorated sections of concrete at the intersection for removal. Crews will follow up by removing an existing trolley rail, constructing a roadway base, paving asphalt, and installing a crosswalk at the intersection.

Motorists are asked to be patient during the roadwork, as delays are expected because of lane closures. Work is expected to occur on weekdays.

The construction is part of Transportation’s plans to widen and further improve a 1.7-mile stretch of North Main Street, from Anthony Avenue to Sunset Drive.

“The overall construction work will greatly improve pedestrian safety with street lighting and designated crosswalks, along with traffic-signalized intersections and roadway surface improvements for motorists,” said Kimberly Toney, a project manager with Richland County Transportation.

Transportation staff expect the North Main project to be finished by the end of fall. The project’s three other phases are already mostly complete, with the remaining work scheduled between Monticello Road and Mt. Vernon Street.



On Sept. 8, crews contracted by Richland County Transportation began removing deteriorated pavement at North Main Street and Monticello Road as part of a revitalization project on North Main.

Upgrades Coming to Garners Ferry Intersection in Lower Richland

(Richland PIO) – Drivers who use Garners Ferry and Harmon roads in Lower Richland should allow more time for daytime trips over the next several months, as Richland County works to improve the intersection of the two roads.

Recently, crews contracted by Richland County Transportation began clearing the right-of-way along Harmon Road as part of the project, which will add a dedicated right-turn lane on Garners Ferry Road as well as left- and right-turn lanes on Harmon Road.

When the right-of-way is clear, crews will begin relocating utilities along both roads. Transportation officials anticipate temporary traffic delays from lane closures related to the work, scheduled for 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily for the duration of the project.

County crews also will install a new traffic signal at the intersection, along with replacing asphalt on Garners Ferry Road and overlaying asphalt on Harmon Road.

“The addition of the turn lanes and improved traffic signal timing will improve traffic flow and movement for those traveling on Garners Ferry and Harmon roads,” Project Manager Kimberly Toney said. “These improvements will improve capacity and volume, particularly with Horrell Hill Elementary School being nearby.”

Richland County expects to finish work on the project by the end of spring 2023.

Concrete Progress: Richland County Taking Feedback on Bluff Road Plans

(Richland PIO) – County residents will soon get the chance to learn about and weigh in on planned improvements for a two-mile stretch of Bluff Road.

A public drop-in meeting highlighting Phase 2 of the County’s Bluff Road Widening Project will be from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, June 2 at Zion Pilgrim Baptist Church, 1609 Zion Ave., Columbia. Attendees can review the project’s redesigned plans at their convenience, talk with Richland County Transportation staff about the designs, and give feedback on the project.

Bluff Road Widening Phase 2 involves the following upgrades:

  • installing a traffic signal at Bluff Road and Bluff Industrial Boulevard
  • resurfacing Bluff Road from National Guard and Berea roads to South Beltline Boulevard
  • making intersection improvements as needed, such as turn lanes

Transportation staff have not yet established a timeline for the improvements but aim to begin construction in 2023.

In addition to the meeting June 2, residents can provide input through the following methods:

During the project’s first phase, crews widened Bluff Road to five lanes, adding bicycle and pedestrian accommodations from Rosewood Drive to George Rogers Boulevard. A sidewalk from Rosewood Drive to Bluff Road was also added.

For more about the Bluff Road improvements, visit www.richlandcountysc.gov/transportation or call 844-RCPENNY.

Drop-in Event to Highlight Transportation Projects, Resources in County

(Richland PIO) – An upcoming event by the County’s Neighborhood Improvement Program (NIP) aims to get residents up to speed on transportation projects and resources available in the community.

“Maintaining SPEED with Transportation Resources” will take place from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, March 24 in the entrance plaza outside the County Administration Building, 2020 Hampton St., Columbia. Attendees can speak with County Transportation staff to learn about current and planned projects and try out a Blue Bike, offered by the City of Columbia’s bike share system.

Sign up to attend via Eventbrite: https://maintaining-speed.eventbrite.com.

The drop-in session is part of NIP’s SPEED (Sustainability, Planning, Education, Engagement, Development) effort, a yearlong program featuring events geared toward training and engaging the community.

“This event continues the goals of our SPEED program by educating residents about sustainable modes of transportation and responsible development of our roads and trails in the County,” said Marc Ridlehoover, Richland County neighborhood planner.

In the event of inclement weather, this event will be postponed to a later date.

To keep up with SPEED events year round, visit the County’s website: www.richlandcountysc.gov, and navigate to the Neighborhood Planning events page. For more information, email NIP@richlandcountysc.gov.