Traffic

Changes proposed for busy Bluffton US 278 intersections. Officials want your input

Here’s how US 278 traffic signals may change your commute during rush hour

Beaufort County Traffic Division will begin using a lagging left turn sequence during rush hour traffic in hopes of keeping traffic moving along the Bluffton corridor on US 278 from SC 170 to the bridges of Hilton Head Island.
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Beaufort County Traffic Division will begin using a lagging left turn sequence during rush hour traffic in hopes of keeping traffic moving along the Bluffton corridor on US 278 from SC 170 to the bridges of Hilton Head Island.

Signs posted in Bluffton this week are evidence of upcoming changes for drivers along that stretch of U.S. 278.

South Carolina Department of Transportation officials, Hilton Head representatives and local residents have given much attention to proposed changes along the highway corridor on the north end of Hilton Head and in the area around the bridges. Less information has been shared about safety improvements farther along into Bluffton.

The new signs, along with a news release from Beaufort County, announce an upcoming community meeting where residents will be able to review the Bluffton plans and ask officials questions.

The meeting is scheduled from 5 to 7 p.m. April 4 in the Bluffton Middle School cafeteria.

U.S. 278 intersections with Buck Island Road, Bluffton Road, Hilton Head National Drive and Salt Marsh Drive are included in the proposal. The news release says that changes include pavement marking, traffic signals and access management improvements.

The highway’s intersection with Buck Island Road has a reputation as dangerous among local residents.

After a 2017 accident in which a pregnant teacher was killed in a collision at the intersection, a Bluffton police spokesperson suggested people avoid making a left turn there without a protected green arrow.

Transportation officials later altered the flashing yellow turn signal during certain hours.

Traffic near the U.S. 278 and Bluffton Road intersection has changed with the development of Walmart, Sam’s Club and several new restaurants in recent years.

Two messages left for an SC DOT manager listed as the contact for the community meeting were not immediately returned on Friday.

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