Wednesday letters: School would cause congestion

January 15, 2014 

— The new Cardinal Newman High School will front on two-lane Alpine Road at Polo Road and adjacent to interstates 20 and 77. While “Malfunction Junction” at the intersection of interstates 20 and 26 is dangerous, many of us fear that the new school on Alpine Road will create Malfunction Junction 2.

When Polo Road Elementary School was constructed, several of us warned Richland County and S.C. Department of Transportation officials about siting this school on two-lane Polo Road, with no berm; with the widening of Interstate 20 it would be just 50 feet from busy Polo Road traffic. Twice a day, a patrol officer must direct backed-up Polo Road traffic at the elementary school.

Cardinal Newman will accommodate 700 students, plus school staff and services. Polo and Alpine roads already are unsafe and congested and will only become worse. How do Richland County and the Department of Transportation plan for this traffic challenge that thousands of drivers will encounter on an already-failing highway grid?

I. Jay Warren

Columbia

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