ollowing the tragic loss of Lindsey in January of 2014, family and friends came together and decided to take action against this deadly intersection that had already taken a life the year before. Through the dedication of her mother, awareness was raised for necessary changes to this dangerous intersection that took her daughter's life. A petition was started, and it was apparent from the astounding response to it that both Charleston residents and visitors who know of this intersection agree that something has to be done.
Not long after the petition was started, a bill was introduced on the house floor by state representative Wendell Gilliard - H4900. The purpose of this bill was to direct the South Carolina Department of Transportation to conduct a feasibility study at the crosswalk in order to determine if an overpass could be constructed. Upon learning of this bill, Lynnette and others vigorously prepared and researched data for a hearing, which you can watch here, in support of the bill.
After getting the bill passed in the initial hearing, what would eventually become the founding members of the foundation urged supporters to contact their senators and representatives to help push the bill through the General Assembly. After three separate visits to the State Capital and a standing ovation in recognition of the dangers and a need for safety changes, bill H4900 was converted into a proviso and added into the budget for 2015.
Since then, the budget bill has passed and the study will be complete by January 1, 2015. We will continue to monitor the study and update you as progress made.
hat has happened since a proviso to conduct a feasibility study was approved and included in the 2015 budget at the end of the legislative session this year? As promised, the Lindsey Taylor Ranz Foundation continues our journey to insure the safety of all citizens at the intersection on Septima P. Clark Parkway (Crosstown Crosswalk), the dangerous and deadly intersection leading onto I-26 and the Ravenel Bridge. The latest step in our journey was a meeting held on August 5, 2014, at the Nichols Church in Charleston. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the manner in which the feasibility study will be conducted and to address concerns/questions about the study. Representative Wendell Gillard and two representatives from the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) fielded concerns/questions about the study from members of our foundation and from residents in the neighborhood adjacent to the intersection.
Those in attendance learned that the study will begin with a twenty-four hour period in which traffic counts will be conducted at different times of day. Observations will be made hourly seven days a week to determine patterns and volumes of traffic. In addition, there will be a study of the geography and demographics of the area now and the demographics in the 1980's when the original crosswalk was built for a comparison of the data between the two time periods. The study will be completed by January of 2015.
Some concerns mentioned during the meeting included the following:
1. Motorists are focused on the entrance onto I-26 and the Ravenel Bridge and are speeding and running red lights.
2. Law enforcement is unable to monitor the traffic in the area due to a lack of parking space for them.
3. There are no cameras to document an accurate account of violations and accidents there.
4. There is poor visibility due to fences, trees, and a street light that has been burned out for two years.
5. The overpass several blocks away is thirty years old and is not handicapped accessible.
To learn more about other concerns, view the video of the meeting right here on our website.