Once again, I-526 supporters desperately seize upon a fixable, temporary cause of traffic delay (flooding of Main Road at Highway 17) and use it to justify spending $720 million for an eight-mile extension of a highway intended to open up real estate development on Johns Island.
I’m referring to the man who wants us to sit in traffic with him and his screaming one-year-old. I understand his frustration; I’ve been there. However, asking the rest of us to commit such a huge sum of money as a knee-jerk reaction to a temporary cause of traffic is unsupportable.
Instead, I invite you to take some time while your one-year-old sleeps and do some research. In many other examples nationwide where the extension and expansion of interstate-style roadways have been chosen to solve traffic woes, the outcome has been the same — more and worse traffic, longer commute times, ugly urban-sprawl development and degraded air quality.
If the I-526 extension were opened today, your one-year-old, 16 years later, would be sitting in the horrible I-526 Johns Island traffic begging for a solution and wondering why the leaders of today, with all the data and resources at hand, played so recklessly with people’s future.