Car Accident Attorney inJames Island, SC

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Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC – Fighting
for Your Rights in James Island, SC

When an accident comes without warning, even the most prepared person can fall victim. One moment, you're walking to a restaurant after a long day of work. The next moment, someone else's negligence and carelessness change your life forever. Personal injury victims aren't just the victims of negligence – they suffer from pain, concern over family and ability to work. Often, these victims do not have the luxury of worrying about work and family, because they're clinging to life in an ER. Without a personal injury attorney in James Island, SC, by their side, they mistakenly provide official statements to insurance agencies and accept settlement offers that only account for a fraction of what they have lost.

If you have recently been hurt in an accident, you may be asking questions like:

  • "What happens now?"
  • "How will I pay for my hospital bills?"
  • "Will I get fired from my job?"
  • "Will I be able to function independently ever again?"

With more than 100,000 car accidents in South Carolina every year, we hear these questions every day. Our hearts hurt for those who are suffering due to no fault of their own. Accident victims are not only left with questions like those above; they're also forced to deal with costs associated with medical bills, car repair, follow-up appointments, and loss of income.

While reading these facts can be bleak, there is a silver lining. South Carolina law dictates that those who are found responsible for your pain and suffering may be obligated to pay for your expenses. Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC exists for that exact reason – to make sure that negligent parties are held accountable. We fight on your behalf to make sure you get the compensation you deserve. We aren't afraid to go toe-to-toe with greedy insurance agencies who do not have your best interests at heart.

Our overarching goal is to protect your rights, and our law firm is uniquely positioned to do so, with attorney Michael Dill‘s vast experience in the auto insurance industry.

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Service Areas

We offer comprehensive vehicle representation for a number of different automobile accidents, including:

  • Distracted Driving
  • Drunk Driving
  • Rollovers
  • Multi-Vehicle Accidents
  • Automobile Defects
  • Roadway Defects
  • Speeding
  • Reckless Driving
  • Uninsured Motorists or
    Underinsured Drivers
  • Rear-End Collisions
  • Car Rental Accidents
  • RV Accidents

If you know you have been involved in one of the car accidents above, the time to seek experienced representation is now. Generally, car accident victims have three years from the date of their injuries to file a personal injury claim in James Island. That time frame can be reduced in certain circumstances. When a wrongful death is involved, surviving family members must take action in a similar time frame.

The bottom line is that speed is of the essence in these cases. When we sit down with you to learn more about your accident, we will help you understand South Carolina law so that you are fully informed before taking legal action. The sooner we can dig into the details of your case, the sooner we can fight for your rights.

We Recover Compensation
When You Need It Most

The law states that personal injury victims are entitled to compensation for the full extent of their injuries. Why? Because the primary goal of injury compensation in James Island, SC, is to help the victim return to the state they would have been in, if the accident never occurred. In the literal sense, doing so isn't possible. The law cannot reverse the incredible suffering and pain that accompanies a severe injury. As such, personal injury victims are entitled to receive a financial reward that equals those damages.

How much compensation you get depends on the facts and nuances of your case. With that said, you may be able to recover compensation for the following needs:

  • Rehab-Related Expenses like
    Physical Therapy
  • All Medical Expenses
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Long-Term Disability
  • Lost Wages and Loss of
    Future Income Earning Ability
  • Disfigurement
  • Emotional Distress
  • Mental Anguish

If you or someone you love was recently injured in a car wreck, contact our office today to speak with a personal injury lawyer in James Island, SC. The sooner you call, the sooner we can begin fighting for your rights and the compensation you need.

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What Our Clients Say

The Role of Negligence in Your
James Island Personal Injury Case

If there were one common truth that we can count on, it's that life is unpredictable. Sometimes, accidents just happen. However, when recklessness and negligence come into play in situations where accidents cause personal injuries, the negligent party can be held responsible under South Carolina law. For victims to have a chance at compensation, the party responsible for the accident must be proven to be negligent. When a party or parties are negligent, they fail to take appropriate care when performing an action, like driving an automobile.

 Estate Planning Lawyer James Island, SC
At Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC, our team works to prove negligence
for our clients by proving:
  • The defendant had an obligation to look out for your safety.
  • The defendant did not uphold that duty.
  • There was causation between the defendant's breach of duty and the injuries you sustained.
  • You suffered real damages.

After an accident occurs, it is critical to take certain steps to help prove the responsible party's negligence and maximize the compensation you rightly deserve.

Steps to Maximize Compensation
After an Accident in James Island, SC

All too often, car wreck victims don't get the compensation they need because they failed to take the proper steps after their accident. Don't let this be you. By having comprehensive records of your car accident and its aftermath, you have a much better chance of protecting your rights and maximizing compensation for your bills and injuries. If you have been injured in an automobile accident in James Island, follow these steps before doing anything else:

1.

Go to a Doctor

First and foremost, seek medical attention for any injuries that you have sustained. You might not realize it now, but your injuries may be more complex and serious than you think. Damage like head trauma and back injuries are not easy to diagnose on your own and sometimes take time to surface. A full medical examination will help reveal the extent of your injuries, lead to a quicker recovery, and help document the injuries you sustained. This last part is essential to prove the significance of your injuries.

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2.

File an
Accident Report

The second step you should take is to report your injuries to the correct authorities. The authorities change depending on the circumstances of your accident. If you were involved in a car wreck in James Island, you should file your report with the highway authorities and any associated insurance agencies. Regardless of where you were injured and how the wreck occurred, the biggest takeaway here is to file a report. That way, you have an established, official record of the incident that can be referred to down the line.

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3.

Preserve Evidence
if Possible

Personal injury cases in James Island are won with evidence. It might sound like the job of the police, but it's important that you try to secure any evidence that you can collect relating to your accident, especially if you are injured. Evidence in auto accident cases tends to disappear quickly. By preserving evidence soon after the accident, it can be used in court. For example, if you cannot get a witness statement immediately after your wreck, their testimony may come across as less reliable. Completing this task on your own can be quite difficult, especially after a serious accident. That's why it's so crucial to complete the last step below.

 Personal Injury Attorney James Island, SC
4.

Contact a Lawyer

One of the most intelligent, important steps you can take after a car accident is calling a personal injury attorney in James Island, SC. At Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC, we will assist you with every step of your personal injury case to ensure that your rights are protected. That includes gathering all types of evidence relevant to your case. When we investigate your accident, we will determine the person who is liable for your losses. If there are multiple liable parties, we will hold each one accountable for their negligence.

Every personal injury case is different, which is why experience counts when it comes to car accident compensation. Our track record speaks for itself, but no number of past results will guarantee a perfect outcome. What we can guarantee, however, is our undivided attention and fierce dedication to your case, no matter the circumstances. Unlike other personal injury law firms in James Island, you can have peace of mind knowing your best interests always come first at Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC.

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Common Car Accidents in
James Island, SC

At Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC, we have years of experience handling some of James Island's most complicated car accident cases. Some of the most common cases that come across our desks include:

Drunk Driving Accidents

Drunk driving is a major problem in the Lowcountry. Drunk drivers are incredibly irresponsible and regularly cause fatal accidents because they drive physically and mentally impaired by alcohol. Drunk drivers have slower reaction times, delayed reflexes, and impaired vision, making them unfit to operate a motor vehicle. In auto wrecks, drunk drivers often come away with minor injuries compared to their victims, which is a bitter pill to swallow

Individuals who make a choice to drive drunk cause accidents by weaving in and out of traffic, going over the speed limit, failing to see pedestrians, and ignoring traffic laws. They may run cars off the road, rear-end vehicles, hit them head-on, or even cause a vehicle to roll over.

Drunk driving accidents in James Island care result in horrible injuries, such as:

  • Burns
  • Broken Bones
  • Head Injuries
  • Brain Trauma
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Soft Tissue Injuries
  • Mental Anguish

If you are injured or have lost a family member due to an impaired or drunk driver, our team of personal injury lawyers in James Island can help. We have extensive experience with car accident cases and can explain your rights in simple, plain terms. It is important to know that you can file a personal injury suit regardless of the criminal case outcome against the drunk driver.

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Rental and RV Accidents

When accidents happen in RVs or rental cars, people are often unsure of their rights. This confusion is understandable since there are additional insurance and legal issues that must be accounted for in these cases.

Fortunately, the lawyers at Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC, have the experience to help you with complex car accident and RV cases. Attorney Michael Dill worked in the auto insurance industry before becoming an attorney. He also has an undergraduate degree that includes a focus on risk management and insurance. When it comes to rental and RV accidents, we review each client's case with a fine-tooth comb. Once we understand your accident, our team will explain your rights and options in easy-to-understand terms.

If you were involved in an accident while driving an RV or a rental vehicle, you may find that your auto insurance company, the rental car's insurance company, and the other party's insurance carrier will try to deny your claim. Situations like these call for a bold, experienced personal injury attorney in James Island, SC, who isn't afraid of large corporations and insurance groups. We have extensive experience with insurance companies and know how to interpret policies. As your advocate, we will ensure that you receive the coverage and compensation you are entitled to, even if an insurance company says you aren't.

We can help you seek compensation in cases that involve:

  • Injuries from Boating Ac
    cidents
  • Rental Cars Injuries
  • RV Accidents
  • Jet Ski Injuries
  • Golf Cart Injuries
  • Rental cars
  • Boat accidents
  • ATV Accidents

Victims of RV and rental car accidents (as well as their families) may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost income or benefits. Our personal injury lawyers work with life-care planners, medical experts, and economists to determine the amount of compensation you will need.

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Texting While Driving and
Distracted Driving Accidents

We live in a time where just about everyone has their eyes glued to their phones. Often, this happens in situations where the person needs to be paying attention, like when they're driving an automobile. Taking a few moments to glance down at your phone can cause irreparable damage to other drivers. That is why texting while driving is illegal in James Island. Typically, this crime is met with a minor traffic violation. However, when a distracted driver injures another motorist, you can seek compensation through a legal suit. If you have been injured in such a situation, our team can help you hold the negligent driver accountable for your losses and damages.

Texting takes drivers' minds and eyes off the road and their hands off the wheel. Because they are not paying attention to their driving,

They miss crucial road signs and information such as:

  • Changes in the Flow
    of Traffic
  • Traffic Lights
  • Traffic Signs
  • Work Zones
  • Bicyclists
  • Lane Changes
  • Incapacitate Cars and
    Motorists

At Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC, we represent injury victims in James Island who are involved in all types of car accidents, including distracted driving. We work with vigor to recover the full amount of compensation you and your family will need to recover. You can rely on our attorneys for dedicated, representation throughout your case. Unlike some distracted driving lawyers in James Island, we will assist you with all aspects of your accident, including access to good medical care if needed.

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Unflinching Legal Advocacy. Compassionate Care

At Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC, we are proud of our commitment to our clients. We pledge to provide them with the highest quality legal representation in James Island and treat them with respect, empathy, and compassion. If you are suffering from the results of a dangerous car accident, know we are here to assist.

We will help you seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and additional losses. Surviving family members may also recover funeral expenses and compensation for the personal loss of a loved one, including the deceased's future income and benefits. When you or your family's health and financial security are on the line, trust the best – choose Cobb Dill & Hammett, LLC.

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Latest News in James Island, SC

In-state Gamecocks: Where does the NFL talent come from?

They call Rock Hill, S.C., “Football Town, U.S.A.” for good reason. When you look back through the last 20 years of NFL Draft data for the University of South Carolina, more in-state Gamecocks that are from the city have been drafted than from anywhere else.Of the 36 in-state Gamecocks who have been selected, five are from Rock Hill. That also includes three of South Carolina’s five first rounders during that time period that have hailed from the state and the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, defensive end ...

They call Rock Hill, S.C., “Football Town, U.S.A.” for good reason. When you look back through the last 20 years of NFL Draft data for the University of South Carolina, more in-state Gamecocks that are from the city have been drafted than from anywhere else.

Of the 36 in-state Gamecocks who have been selected, five are from Rock Hill. That also includes three of South Carolina’s five first rounders during that time period that have hailed from the state and the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.

Here's a look at some interesting data as it relates to what parts of the state of South Carolina lead the way in sending top talent to the Gamecocks and ultimately the NFL.

Here’s how it breaks down by county. York County, where Rock Hill is located, is tied at the top.

York (5)

Clowney (Rock Hill/South Pointe)Stephon Gilmore (Rock Hill/South Pointe)Johnathan Joseph (Rock Hill/Northwestern)Devonte Holloman (Rock Hill/South Pointe)Ko Simpson (Rock Hill)

Berkeley (5)

Brandon Shell (Goose Creek)Bruce Ellington (Moncks Corner/Berkeley)Israel Mukuamu (Moncks Corner/Berkeley)Javon Kinlaw (Goose Creek)Rod Wilson (Cross)

Greenville (3)

Andre Goodman (Taylors/Eastside)Travelle Wharton (Simpsonville/Hillcrest)Jamon Meredith (Simpsonville/Hillcrest)

Richland (3)

Corey Jenkins (Columbia/Dreher)Dennis Daley (Columbia/Ridge View)T.J. Brunson (Columbia/Richland Northeast)

Chesterfield (2)

Cliff Matthews (Cheraw)Justice Cunningham (Pageland Central)

Clarendon (2)

Fred Bennett (Manning)Jerell Adams (Summerton/Scotts Branch)

Georgetown (2)

John Stamper (Andrews)Clifton Geathers (Carvers Bay)

Horry (2)

T.J. Johnson (Aynor)Bryan Edwards (Conway)

Spartanburg (2)

Marcus Lattimore (Duncan/Byrnes)Deebo Samuel (Inman/Chapman)

Aiken (1)

Troy Williamson (Silver Bluff)

Bamberg (1)

A.J. Cann (Bamberg-Erhardt)

Beaufort (1)

Devin Taylor (Beaufort)

Calhoun (1)

Alshon Jeffery (Calhoun County)

Charleston (1)

Langston Moore (James Island)

Cherokee (1)

Sidney Rice (Gaffney)

Chester (1)

Sheldon Brown (Lewisville)

Greenwood (1)

D.J. Swearinger (Greenwood)

Lancaster (1)

Darrell Shropshire (Andrew Jackson)

Union (1)

Shi Smith (Union County)

Of the five South Carolina products that have played for the Gamecocks and been drafted in the first round during this time period, three are from Rock Hill and one each from Aiken and Goose Creek.

Joseph- NorthwesternClowney/Gilmore- South PointeWilliamson- Silver BluffKinlaw- Goose Creek

The Gamecocks have had more in-state prospects at wide receiver drafted than at any other position during this time period. Seven receivers have been picked. If you look closely nearly all of them are in the process of or were extremely productive in the NFL, too. There was one first round pick, Williamson, in the group (he’s one that was not). Rice, Jeffery and Samuel were all early second round picks.

Here’s how the numbers break down by position.

Wide receiver- 7Offensive Line- 6Cornerback- 5Defensive End- 5Linebacker- 4Defensive Tackle- 3Safety- 3Tight End- 2Running Back- 1

Of the 36 listed, 17 rated four stars out of high school, 13 were rated three stars, there were three two stars, two five stars and one that was not rated as a football prospect.

Now, a lot of this depends on what you consider what region in the state of South Carolina (it's understood that that is up for debate). Using a map that had four larger regions that included the Rock Hill area with the Midlands and a large portion of the state simply as the Lowcountry (Charleston all the way down to Beaufort/Hilton Head), this is how it broke down. ??Again, the geography here could be broken down even further.

Midlands (including Rock Hill)- 13Pee Dee- 8Upstate - 8Lowcountry- 7

Outside of the Rock Hill area, the talent in the Palmetto State is basically spread evenly throughout. Given that it is a smaller state, it's good that there aren't very many "talent desert regions".

There are a few that overlap that were recruited by one coaching staff, but played for another in the year they were drafted. Here’s the recruited by breakdown.

Steve Spurrier- 16Lou Holtz- 11Will Muschamp- 6Brad Scott- 3

This is how it breaks down when you categorize which staff coached them the year they were drafted.

Spurrier- 20Holtz- 9Muschamp- 7

Round 1: 5Round 2: 5Round 3: 4Round 4: 5Round 5: 2Round 6: 9Round 7: 6

There is no question that recruiting the state of South Carolina well is paramount for the Gamecocks. In fact, of the 15 first-round draft picks the program has produced in its history, nine are from the state (four from the Rock Hill area). With an diverse geographic balance to the pool of players in the Palmetto State outside of the hotbed in York County, it’s important for any staff to not go over the in-state players everywhere with a fine toothed comb. Current Gamecocks head coach Shane Beamer and his staff have done an excellent job with that in the short time they have been at Carolina.

These numbers also will rise as the state of South Carolina continues to grow population-wise. It only strands to reason that the more people within a state that cares about football, the more players that state will produce. There isn’t enough to stock an entire SEC football program with quality depth mostly from the in-state talent base right now and may not ever be, but the state is growing.

Also, you see by looking at the names through the years how important getting the best from the state is to this program. You are never getting them all, but when the Gamecocks have cycled up, they have gotten their share of the cream of the crop.

Cost to extend I-526 to James Island more than triples to $2.35 billion

The price tag for the long-planned extension of the Mark Clark Expressway from West Ashley across Johns Island to James Island has suddenly tripled.The S.C. Department of Transportation’s new construction estimate is a whopping $2.35 billion — or more than three times the projected cost when it was last calculated in 2015.The impact on Charleston County would be dramatic and those in charge have expressed concern the future of the road plan is in doubt.“I don’t know if people are going to have an ...

The price tag for the long-planned extension of the Mark Clark Expressway from West Ashley across Johns Island to James Island has suddenly tripled.

The S.C. Department of Transportation’s new construction estimate is a whopping $2.35 billion — or more than three times the projected cost when it was last calculated in 2015.

The impact on Charleston County would be dramatic and those in charge have expressed concern the future of the road plan is in doubt.

“I don’t know if people are going to have an appetite for it,” said Council Chairman Teddie Pryor. “Where are we going to get the extra money from?”

With the state’s share of the cost capped at $420 million, Charleston County had expected to contribute about $305 million to the project under the previous $725 million estimate.

Now, the county’s share would be more than $1.9 billion.

“We’ll wait to see how the county responds,” said state Secretary of Transportation Christy Hall. “Our recommendation remains ... to proceed with preliminary activity on the project and get to the point where it would be shovel-ready.”

In a letter to the county April 25, Hall said DOT is asking the county and the state Transportation Infrastructure Bank Board for approval to spend $150 million for ongoing work to make the road plan ready for bids. The county would pay half that amount.

Beyond that, the highway department wants to county to demonstrate “a reasonable financial approach to the entire project.”

Pryor said the County Council will discuss the issue when it meets at a regularly scheduled meeting at 5 p.m. today, April 26. He said the county would likely need federal assistance, new taxes, or both, in order to fund such a project.

The county and the state have each spent about $12.5 million on the project so far, he said.

“The longer this thing is delayed, the more it’s going to cost,” said Pryor.

Hall said one reason the cost has gone up so much is the soaring price of real estate in Charleston County. Acquiring the land needed for the road would cost an estimated $261 million, she said.

The DOT estimate assumes construction could begin in 2028, and also assumes there would be two or three years of litigation before that.

If completed, there would be a highway loop around Charleston, with the interstate running from Mount Pleasant across Daniel Island, North Charleston and West Ashley, then becoming more of a parkway across Johns Island and connecting to the James Island Connector on James Island.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

James Island Chick-Fil-A construction project draws mixed reviews from neighbors

JAMES ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV) – How many times have you driven past Chick-Fil-A and seen a line of cars wrapped around the drive-thru line?This seems to be the case with a location on James Island, and Chick-Fil-A has submitted a variance request to expand the property.During the breakfast or lunch rush, Folly Road near the Chick-Fil-A can turn into a parking lot.Bo Grimes lives down the street, and says six days a week, it’s the same story.”People like myself actually trying to go to work or things ...

JAMES ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV) – How many times have you driven past Chick-Fil-A and seen a line of cars wrapped around the drive-thru line?

This seems to be the case with a location on James Island, and Chick-Fil-A has submitted a variance request to expand the property.

During the breakfast or lunch rush, Folly Road near the Chick-Fil-A can turn into a parking lot.

Bo Grimes lives down the street, and says six days a week, it’s the same story.

”People like myself actually trying to go to work or things like that, are being blocked by the actual line of the customers,” he says. “It’s like you’re getting stuck in the line. It’s like you’re waiting in line for something you’re not going to buy.”

Chick-Fil-A is trying to help with traffic flow and the drive through line and has filed a “variance request” with the town of James Island to remove trees around the property, and add on for a double drive-thru.

Mikell Fosberry has seen the traffic headaches, and says if the expansion helps with the congestion, he supports the construction.

“I trust Chick-Fil-A. They usually do a pretty good job of keeping the traffic moving at a lot of their locations,” he says.

Not everyone is thrilled. In the Facebook group “Save James Island”, some people posted comments about the preservation of the trees. One person posted “I enjoy Chick-Fil-A as much as anyone else, but I’d like to preserve the integrity of our island more than I need a chicken nugget.”

Another posted "James Island has the prettiest CFA in Charleston--beautifully landscaped with MANY pretty trees. Please do not ruin it!"

The request still has to be approved before construction can begin, but Grimes wants to see something done to get the cars through the line.

“I guess I just notice the traffic blockage more than I noticed the trees.”

We reached out to Chick-Fil-A to find out more about their request. A spokesperson said in a statement:

“Chick-fil-A planted 11 of the 12 trees proposed for removal at the James Island restaurant when it opened 16 years ago. We’re committed to being a good neighbor in James Island and are working on plans to help minimize any future traffic impacts. As part of this we would also replace any trees, including one already damaged by lightning.”

The zoning request will be considered during a Board of Zoning Appeals meeting Tuesday night. You have until 12 p.m. on Tuesday to submit a comment.

The Town invites the public to submit comments on this case prior to the meeting via email to kcrane@jamesislandsc.us referencing Case #3-22-028 and #3-22-029.

Where to find the best pizza in Charleston, SC

The Holy City might be known for some good old shrimp ‘n grits + she crab soup, and pizza may not be the first thing that comes to mind. That doesn’t mean there aren’t some really good options. We did some digging to find a few of the best local pizza spots around town and ...

The Holy City might be known for some good old shrimp ‘n grits + she crab soup, and pizza may not be the first thing that comes to mind. That doesn’t mean there aren’t some really good options.

We did some digging to find a few of the best local pizza spots around town and we’re sharing the knead-to-knows.

Charleston

D’Allesandro’s Pizza, 229 St. Philip St. | A neighborhood favorite since 2006. We love the Big Cheesy.

Pizzeria di Giovanni, 40 N. Market St. | Check out Neapolitan-style pizza paired with a Greek salad.

Sabatino’s Pizza, 151 Calhoun St. | Consistency is key and Sabatino’s passes the test. Bonus: Head to the walk-up window for a slice.

Baker & Brewer, 94 Stuart St. | Come for the ‘za, stay for the relaxed atmosphere + outdoor space.

Mt. Pleasant

Orlando’s Pizza, 230 Mathis Ferry Rd. + 295 Seven Farms Dr., Daniel Island | You can’t beat the two-slice lunch special $8 for cheese and $9 for a topping.

Amalfi’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria, 664 Long Point Rd. | Pro tip: Try the Sicilianstyle pizza.

Toni’s Pizza, 1795 N. Hwy. 17 | Order an authentic Detroit-style pizza plus a Vernors Float for the perfect balance of sweet + salty.

North Charleston

Park Pizza, 1028 E. Montague Ave. | Mix up your usual order with the pizza of the month.

EVO Pizzeria, 1075 E. Montague Ave. | Pair your snack plate dinner special with a local draft beer from Indigo Reef or Revelry.

Other loc’s

Slice Co., 1662 Savannah Hwy. | Enjoy fresh mozzarella or vegan cheese, both made in-house.

PizzaVola Express James Island, 1041 Folly Rd. | Choose a slice, a pie, or an Italian dish at this one-stop shop.

Hollywood Pizza, 6231 Hwy. 162, Hollywood | Enjoy a keto pizza bowl or pie at an outdoor table — it’s worth the drive.

Heads up, this is not a comprehensive list. Didn’t catch your favorite local spot this time around? Share it with us.

South Carolina says cost to finish I-526 in Charleston triples to $2.3B

The project's supporters suggest prices may soon fall, reducing the cost of I-526.CHARLESTON, S.C. — South Carolina's road agency says the cost to build a long-debated completion of the Interstate 526 loop has tripled to more than $2.3 billion because of rising costs of land and construction.The state's share of the Mark C...

The project's supporters suggest prices may soon fall, reducing the cost of I-526.

CHARLESTON, S.C. — South Carolina's road agency says the cost to build a long-debated completion of the Interstate 526 loop has tripled to more than $2.3 billion because of rising costs of land and construction.

The state's share of the Mark Clark Extension is capped at $420 million in a 2019 agreement with the Charleston County, meaning the county would need to find nearly $2 billion to complete the project — six times more than it planned.

The highway would start at the west end of I-526 in West Ashley, cross on to Johns Island and run back off the island to James Island. It would end at the James Island Connector.

“This, to me, is a perfect opportunity for Charleston County Council to walk away from this project,” Jason Crowley of the Coastal Conservation League told The Post and Courier of Charleston.

The league has fought the new highway for years, saying it would benefit few people and harm many.

A large portion of the project would go through Charleston. Mayor John Tecklenburg said the I-526 extension is vital.

"Our West Ashley and island residents need and deserve the traffic relief and public safety improvements this project will bring,” Tecklenburg said in statement.

The I-526 extension is separate from another project to widen the mostly four-lane interstate that links Mount Pleasant to the state port, Interstate 26 and West Ashley. The freeway has been busy because of the Charleston area's growth.

State officials said it could cost around $7 billion to expand I-526 to eight lanes, untangle its intersection with I-26 and build or expand several bridges along the route.

For the I-526 extension, the South Carolina Department of Transportation is asking Charleston County to show it still wants to fund the project, estimating the county would need to pay about $75 million to get ready for bids.

“I don’t know if people are going to have an appetite for it,” said County Council Chair Teddie Pryor. “Where are we going to get the extra money from?”

The project's supporters suggest prices may soon fall, reducing the cost of I-526. Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce said, though, that further delays show costs inevitably rise.

“The current cost of the project heightens the important need of completing this effort now," the chamber said.

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