2018-09-07 / Front Page

City of Cayce beautifies Knox Abbott


Construction workers run heavy equipment as they continue the Knox Abbott Pedestrian Safety and Traffic Calming Project. Construction workers run heavy equipment as they continue the Knox Abbott Pedestrian Safety and Traffic Calming Project. For commuters who use Knox Abbott Drive to travel to Columbia, the drive has gotten more congested and choppy the last several weeks due to orange cones and electronic arrows funneling two lanes of traffic into one.

It’s all due to an $8 million Knox Abbott Pedestrian Safety and Traffic Calming Project from the City of Cayce.

The City and Mayor Elise Partin celebrated one completion of the project when the Lizard’s Thickett at the corner of Knox Abbott and State Street reopened last week after undergoing massive renovations.

It all began several years ago when the city put together a pedestrian safety and traffic calming plan for the Knox Abbott Corridor. It included sidewalks, a vegetative buffer from where pedestrians walk and the road, and higher light polls.


This lightpole, at the intersection of Knox Abbott Drive and State Street is one of the new light polls installed in the City of Cayce. It is designed to move the power lines from a driver’s line of site. This lightpole, at the intersection of Knox Abbott Drive and State Street is one of the new light polls installed in the City of Cayce. It is designed to move the power lines from a driver’s line of site. That plan went into action when the City of Cayce embarked on replacing 75 percent of the city’s waterlines. The waterline project will take 18 months in total to complete and should, along with the Knox Abbott beautification, be completed by the fall. The Knox Abbott beautification will take a total of eight months.

When the phase of the waterline project came to Knox Abbott Drive, Partin made the decision to repair the sidewalks in conjunction with the pedestrian safety and traffic calming plan.

“It makes it safer for everybody,” Partin said. “It makes it more esthetically pleasing, which then adds more to business.”

Along with the sidewalks and vegetative buffer, bigger lightposts are being added to pull the power lines from the normal driver’s site. Because the polls are bigger, there will be less of them than the traditional wooden polls. Partin made the decision to go with the polls rather than burying the lines.

“We thought about burying them, but that would have costs millions of dollars,” Partin said. “We are pretty reasonable with making good decisions with taxpayer dollars, and that didn’t make sense. This will make a big impact for less money.”

The approximate cost of the waterline replacement project is $28 million, while the Knox Abbott Pedestrian Safety and Traffic Calming Project cost is $8 million.

Once all the work on Knox Abbot Drive is complete, it will enhance a major corridor, not only for the cities of Cayce and West Columbia but a more pleasing entrance to those traveling from the Columbia Metropolitan Airport to different destinations in Columbia.

“This is our responsibility of a great welcome to this area for people who haven’t been to this region,” Partin said. “We want to make sure we keep our part looking good.”

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