Roads and Highways | South Carolina Public Radio


“R” is for Roads and Highways. Until the War of 1812, South Carolina’s roads were secondary to water transportation. During the 1820s, the legislature appropriated funds to build the State Road to connect Charleston with western North Carolina. The legislature enacted traffic regulation but left the construction and maintenance of roads to local road commissioners. The period from 1891 to 1911 was called the “era of good roads” as citizens lobbied for better roads. In 1922,  federal highways and the first gasoline tax arrived. In 1956, construction began on the interstate highway system. Five interstates, 20, 26, 77, 85, and 95 cross the state. Funding for the state’s highways and roads has been a perennial challenge. Today, South Carolina’s Department of Transportation maintains one of the largest state highway systems in the nation.