Bowman Road overpass to open, local businesses to suffer

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) - When Allison Rhoden bought her pottery studio on Bowman Road{}nine years ago, she thought it was the perfect location to build a business. But now, construction is closing in on her front door.

"I think overall it's going to be a positive move, but in the interim it's going to be really bad for these small businesses on Bowman because people might not want to frequent our stores because it's difficult to get to," said Rhoden, owner of Kiln' Time painter and pottery studio.

Kiln' Time is one of a handful of businesses along Bowman Road across from Kmart.

Starting Monday, Charleston County officials will shut down the section of Bowman Road between McDonald's and Kmart for five months. The closure will keep customers from accessing Kiln' Time from Hwy 17, and force them to loop around on Chuck Dawley Blvd.

"Bowman Road is currently being widened from its existing two lanes in that section to five lanes as part of the Mount Pleasant project, not part of the Johnnie Dodds project. But our bridge will accommodate their widening," said Steve Thigpen, chief engineer for Charleston County.

On Sunday, officials will open the Bowman Road overpass and assist with directing traffic around the Bowman Road closure.

"We have a number of detour signs that are out to help the public maneuver around the closure. If they follow the signs it will get them to where they need to go.

Despite the end result, Rhoden wonders if five months of road closure is worth the wait.

"We'll see how the next five months are," said Rhoden.

{}Other aspects of Johnnie Dodds construction will continue until spring 2013.