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Toll booth removal scheduled for Hilton Head expressway

February 13, 2022 GMT

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (AP) — Workers will begin next month to demolish the toll booth on the quickest way to get to the heart of Hilton Head Island.

The contractor will have 60 days to tear down the structure and paint new stripes for traffic on the Cross Island Parkway, which is also U.S. Highway 278, according to the South Carolina Department of Transportation.

The work will be limited to night hours. No lanes can be closed during the day or between April 8 and April 20 when Hilton Head Island hosts the RBC Heritage golf tournament, the agency told The Island Packet of Hilton Head.

Tolls were dropped on the highway last July, 23 years after it opened.

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The 7-mile (11-kilometer) expressway veers off from the only road to the island just after it crosses the Intracoastal Waterway, allowing drivers to avoid a 12-mile (19-kilometer) route full of stoplights and suburban sprawl.

The toll was $1.25 for a passenger car before it was dropped.

The state now has only one toll road — the Southern Connector which connects Interstate 385 to Interstate 85 south of Greenville. That freeway is about 30 years from having its bonds paid off and dropping the tolls.

The road was initially called the Cross Island Expressway, but Hilton Head Island residents who carefully control the look and feel of their resort island got the road named a parkway — not surprising in a town that once required the Red Roof Inn to install a brown roof.