Representatives with the SCDOT are responding to criticism from Conway council members, after the cancellation of a scheduled presentation on the Main Street Bridge project.
The original council agenda suggested an SCDOT engineer would give a presentation during Monday’s meeting about the Cultra Road resurfacing project and the bridge project.
However, SCDOT Secretary of Transportation Christy Hall tells News13 that the agency made contact with the city last week, notifying them that no SCDOT representative would be at Monday’s meeting.
“We spoke to the city on Friday and advised that it was too early for an update AND this appears to me to be a misunderstanding between us with regards to the Monday night council meeting.”
On Tuesday, Conway Mayor Barbara Bellamy confirmed that SCDOT officials did inform her late last week about additional structural concerns for the project, and the fact that an SCDOT representative would not be providing an update at Monday’s meeting.
Mayor Bellamy says she sent a letter about the project from the SCDOT to the other council members prior to Monday’s meeting.
She also said she had a separate conversation with the SCDOT about the agency’s cancellation of Monday’s presentation, but it’s not clear whether Mayor Bellamy passed that information along to other council members.
The online agenda was not modified to include this change and council member Ashley Smith told News13 at the meeting that SCDOT was expected to be present.
“They were supposed to come to the meeting tonight. It’s very disappointing.”
As for the project, SCDOT Deputy Secretary for Engineering Leland Colvin wrote a letter to Mayor Bellamy dated February 14 that said that it had been determined that some additional repairs to steel elements on the bridge were needed to maximize the service life of the bridge.
SCDOT said it was working to develop a modified work plan that would expedite the additional repairs and was considering all options to minimize traffic impacts associated with the summer tourist season.
Hall told News13 Tuesday that engineers met Tuesday morning to discuss the project. Next, crews will put together a repair plan design for the steel repairs.
Mayor Bellamy says SCDOT representatives plan to provide a report on the status of the bridge project as early as the first council meeting in March.