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The Highways of South Carolina US 17 
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US 17
From: Georgia State Line above Savannah, GA (Jasper County)
To: North Carolina State Line above Little River (Horry County)
Total Length: 224.5 miles  
Nationally, US 17 runs from US 41 Punt Gorda, FL to US 11-50-522 in Winchester, VA.
ROUTE LOG
GA STATE LINE: 0 - 0
SC 170 ALT: 4.1 - 4.1
SC 170 SB: 2.5 - 6.6
SC 170 NB: 1.6 - 8.2
I-95 (exit 5), BEGIN US 321: 4.5 - 12.7
US 321 NB: 0.7 - 13.4
SC 46: 0.2 - 13.6
US 278 EB: 2 - 15.6
SC 336: 11.7 - 27.3
US 278 WB: 0.2 - 27.5
I-95 SB (exit 22): 1.1 - 28.6
SC 462: 6 - 34.6
I-95 NB (exit 33): 4.8 - 41.4
Beaufort-Jasper Line: 1.5 - 42.9
US 17 ALT, US 21 NB: 0.2 - 43.1
US 21 SB: 6.7 - 49.8
Colleton-Beaufort Line: 5.9 - 55.7
SC 303: 6.1 - 61.8
SC 64: 10.2 - 72
Charleston-Colleton Line: 1 - 73
SC 174: 5.9 - 78.9
SC 165: 6 - 84.9
SC 162: 5.9 - 90.8
SC 7: 7.4 - 98.2
I-526 (exit 9): 0.1 - 98.3
SC 171: 3.9 - 102.2
SC 700: 0.2 - 102.4
SC 61: 0.1 - 102.5
SC 30: 1 - 103.5
US 78: 0.9 - 104.4
BEGIN I-26 (exit 221): 0.1 - 104.5
I-26 WB (exit 220): 0.7 - 105.2
US 52: 0.1 - 105.3
SC 703: 3 - 108.3
I-526 (exit 30), I-526 SPUR: 3.2 - 111.5
I-526 (exit 29): 0.3 - 111.8
SC 517: 1 - 112.8
SC 41: 3.6 - 116.4
SC 45: 26.6 - 143
Georgetown-Charleston Line: 7.5 - 150.5
US 521: 15.2 - 165.7
US 17 ALT, US 701: 0.2 - 165.9
US 17 BUS: 19.2 - 185.1
SC 707: 3.1 - 188.2
Horry-Georgetown Line: 0.4 - 188.6
US 17 Bus: 0.2 - 188.8
SC 544: 5.9 - 194.7
SC 707: 2.6 - 197.3
US 501: 3.2 - 200.5
US 17 Bus: 7.7 - 208.2
SC 22: 2 - 210.2
SC 65: 4.2 - 214.2
SC 9 EB: 4.5 - 218.7
SC 9 WB, SC 90: 0.9 - 219.6
SC 90: 1.2 - 220.8
SC 179: 2.8 - 223.6
NC STATE LINE: 0.9 - 224.5
Creation: Appeared in 1927 as an original US highway. Entered South Carolina from Georgia at Port Wentworth, GA, then headed north to Hardeeville, Ridgeland, Yemassee and Walterboro, then proceeding east to Jacksonboro and Charleston, then heading north to Moncks Corner, Kingstree, Lake City and Florence, then east to Marion and Mullins before slipping east into North Carolina near Nichols. US 17 was attached to SC 1 from Georgia to Yemassee; SC 30 from there to Walterboro; SC 6 from there to Charleston (used Spring St to King St); SC 2 from there to near today's Goose Creek; SC 41 from there to Florence (used Irby to Chevis); SC 3 from there to North Carolina. This zig-zag route through the coastal area of South Carolina was 288 miles long.
In 1928, all SC routes were dropped from US 17 except SC 2.
In 1935, US 17 underwent its first major re-route in South Carolina, running from Charleston to North Carolina at Little River via Mt. Pleasant, Georgetown, and Myrtle Beach. Charleston (now used Spring/King/Columbus/Meeting/Lee Sts) to Georgetown was a multiplex with the older US 701. Georgetown to North Carolina was a replacement for the first SC 49. The old route became US 52 from Charleston to Florence and US 76 from Florence to North Carolina. A fair amount of US 52 has been rerouted in itself since then - see that page for the details. The US 76 corridor is largely still US 76 except it probably used Old Marion Hwy (former SC 305) east of Florence.
In 1938, US 17 was given a bypass of Rantowles, Ravenel, and Adams Run on new alignment. The old route may have briefly become a US 17 ALT (Gen Drafting) but soon became SC 162 soon after. Today this is all of SC 162, some of SC 174, and S-10-40.
In 1940, US 17 was given a bypass around central Yemassee, leaving behind an undetermined route. Today it is S-7-3 and S-25-1.
Between 1943-47, US 17 was rerouted in Charleston to run Spring/Meeting/Lee Sts.
About 1951, US 17 was rerouted to run directly from Jacksonboro to Pocotaligo, replacing SC 32. The old route through Walterboro became SC 64, the piece of SC 63 in Downtown Walterboro, and US 17 ALT down to Pocotaligo.
Between 1951-53, US 17 was rerouted in Charleston into one-way splits - NB used Cannon/King/Columbus/Meeting, while SB used Meeting/Spring Sts. The two alignments crossed each other at King and Spring Sts.
In 1957 or 1958, US 17 NB split was rerouted in Charleston to use Cannon/Coming/Line Sts to Meeting. The NB-SB routes still crossed, now at Coming at Spring Sts.
Between 1965-67, US 17 received its western bypass of Murrells Inlet leaving behind US 17 Business.
About 1967, US 17 received its northern bypass of Mt. Pleasant, leaving behind US 17 Business. Today this is half SC 703 and all of I-526 Bus.
In 1968 or 1969, US 17 was rerouted through Downtown Charleston onto the "Crosstown Expwy". Previously US 17 split into one way streets through the downtown area using Spring/Cannon St, and Line/Lee Sts.
In 1971, US 17 was placed onto I-95 from Ridgeland to just south of Coosawhatchie.
In 1972, US 17 was placed on new expressway in the vicinity of SC 9 and the Intracoastal Waterway, leaving behind S-26-20 and SC 90.
In 1973, US 17 was placed on I-95 from north of Coosawhatchie to Pocotaligo.
In 1975, US 17 was placed on I-95 around Coosawhatchie.
About 1981, US 17 was given its bypass of Myrtle Beach leaving behind US 17 Business. From Mrrells Inlet to US 501 was new construction, while US 501 northward was a replacement of SC 317.
About 1995, US 17 was rerouted below Hardeeville to cross into Georgia right at Downtown Savannah, replacing US 17 ALT. The old route into Georgia became part of an extended SC 170.
In 2005, US 17 was rerouted in Charleston to multiplex up I-26 a short distance then heading east across a new Cooper River Bridge crossing.
Improvements:Upon designation, US 17 was paved only from Megget to Charleston to near Goose Creek.
In 1928, US 17 was paved from Adams Run to Megget and from Pee Dee to Nichols.
US 17 was fully paved in 1929 or 1930.
The first piece of US 17 to be 4-laned was in place between 1947-52, from US 501 north a couple miles.
In 1956, US 17 was 4-laned from Ridgeland to Pocotaligo. Also in 1956 US 17 was 4-laned from SC 615 (current SC 171) into downtown Charleston.
In 1957 or 1958, US 17 was 4-laned from SC 171 west to S-10-20 Main Rd.
In 1959, US 17 was 4-laned a couple miles to the south of US 501 Myrtle Beach.
Around 1962, US 17 was 4-laned from Myrtle Beach south to near the Waccamaw River Bridge, except around Murrells Inlet.
In 1963, US 17 was 4-laned north from Myrtle Beach to Atlantic Beach.
Between 1965 or 1967, US 17 was 4-laned from Charleston to the north end of the Mt. Pleasant Bypass and also on the new Murrells Inlet Bypass.
In 1968 or 1969, US 17 was 4-laned across the Waccamaw/Pee Dee/Black Rivers into Georgetown.
In 1970, US 17 was 4-laned from the north end of the Mt. Pleasant Bypass to SC 41.
In 1971, US 17 was 4-laned from Crescent Beach to the NC Line, except at the Intracoastal Waterway.
In 1972, US 17 was 4-laned around teh SC 9 interchanges and also from SC 162 Rantowles to S-10-20.
In 1973, US 17 was 4-laned from SC 64 Jacksonboro to SC 162.
In 1974, US 17 was 4-laned from US 321 Hardeeville south to the US 17-17 ALT split near Savannah; also US 17 was 4-laned around Awendaw.
In 1976, US 17 was 4-laned from Georgetown south for several miles.
In 1978, US 17 was 4-laned from from SC 41 to Awendaw and also from the Santee River Bridges north to Georgetown.
In 1979, US 17 was 4-laned from Mclellanville to the Santee River.
In 1980 or 1981, US 17 was 4-laned from Awendaw to McLellanville.
When I drove US 17 in January 2004 there were 3 sections of a mile each of undivided 4-lane ("passing lanes") between Gardens Corner and Jacksonboro. It looks like they want to 4-lane all of this stretch and have started with the easiest sections to complete. This 2-lane stretch is very dangerous and accident prone.
In summary US 17 is 4-laned continuously from SC 64 north to the North Carolina line, as well as Ridgeland to Pocotaligo and a small segment south of Hardeeville.
Comment: US 17 is South Carolina's important coastal route, north of Pocotaligo.
The Myrtle Beach bypass is now not so much a good way to avoid the Grand Strand and the development between Georgetown and Myrtle Beach (especially Pawleys Island area) has saddled down US 17. Two better alternatives: US 701 from Georgetown to Conway, SC 90 east to S-26-57 to US 17 in North Carolina; OR US 17 to SC 544 to SC 31 to SC 9....
US 17 is known as the "Ocean Hiway" in South Carolina.
US 17 between SC 41 and Georgetown is still very sparsely settled, with the Francis Marion National Forest and Santee River swamps limiting development potential.
US 17 truck traffic is directed to use I-526 on both ends around Charleston.
US 17 directly serves Brookgreen Gardens and Myrtle Beach and Huntington Beach State Parks.
US 17BUSINESS
From: US 17 Murrells Inlet (Georgetown County)
To: US 17 near Briarcliffe (Horry County)
Total Length:22.8 miles  
ROUTE LOG
US 17: 0 - 0
SC 707: 3.5 - 3.5
Horry-Georgetown Line: 0.4 - 3.9
US 17: 0.4 - 4.3
SC 544: 4.9 - 9.2
SC 73: 2.8 - 12
US 501: 3.7 - 15.7
SC 73: 6.2 - 21.9
US 17: 0.9 - 22.8
Creation: Appeared between 1965-67, when US 17 was given its western Murrells Inlet Bypass. This was mainline US 17 prior and ran only through the town of Murrells Inlet.
Adjustments: In 1981, US 17 Business was extended north through the Surfside Beach and Myrtle Beach area, replacing more mainline US 17.
Improvements: Fully paved from inception; The extended Myrtle Beach portion of the route was already multilaned when designated US 17 Business.
Comment: US 17 Business for Myrtle Beach uses Kings Hwy.
US 17 Business was the original SC 49.
In Murrells Inlet the route is still fairly undeveloped, while Myrtle Beach is the polar opposite.
US 17 Business is the longest business route in South Carolina.
US 17 Business  Decommissioned
Previous US 17 Business: US 17 Business: Appeared about 1967 as US 17-701 was placed on its northern bypass of Mt. Pleasant.
US 17 Business followed Coleman Blvd and Georgetown Hwy (now Chuck Dawley Blvd)
In 1992, US 17 Business was removed entirely from this routing, leaving behind SC 703 on Coleman Blvd and I-526 Business SPUR on Chuck Dawley Blvd.
US 17 Business was part of the original SC 40 corridor, although a fair amount of the route has been changed/straightened since SC 40's days.
US 17 ALT
From: US 17US 21 Pocotaligo (Beaufort County)
To: US 17US 701 Georgetown (Georgetown County)
Total Length: 123.4 miles  
ROUTE LOG
US 17, US 21 SB: 0 - 0
Hampton-Beaufort Line: 2.4 - 2.4
SC 68: 1.2 - 3.6
Colleton-Hampton Line: 2.2 - 5.8
US 21 NB: 1.6 - 7.4
SC 63 WB: 15 - 22.4
SC 303: 1.5 - 23.9
SC 63 EB: 0.2 - 24.1
US 15: 0.1 - 24.2
SC 64 Bus WB: 0.3 - 24.5
SC 64 Bus EB: 0.6 - 25.1
SC 64: 0.8 - 25.9
SC 651: 8.8 - 34.7
Dorchester-Colleton Line: 5.7 - 40.4
SC 61 WB: 7.3 - 47.7
SC 61 EB: 0.3 - 48
SC 642: 1.8 - 49.8
US 78: 6.5 - 56.3
Berkeley-Dorchester Line: 0.6 - 56.9
SC 165: 0.2 - 57.1
I-26 (exit 199): 0.8 - 57.9
US 176: 3.8 - 61.7
SC 6: 10.8 - 72.5
US 52 SB: 1.5 - 74
SC 402: 1.6 - 75.6
US 52 NB: 0.3 - 75.9
SC 45 WB: 14.3 - 90.2
SC 41 SB, SC 45 EB: 3.8 - 94
Berkeley-Georgetown Line: 1.7 - 95.7
SC 41 NB: 4.2 - 99.9
US 521 NB: 13.8 - 113.7
US 521 SB: 9.5 - 123.2
US 17, US 701: 0.2 - 123.4
Creation: Appeared in 1951 or 1952, running as it does now. This replaced mainline US 17 from Pocotaligo to Walterboro; S-15-57 in Walterboro; SC 64 from Walterboro to Georgetown.
Improvements:Fully paved upon designation,
The first piece of US 17 ALT to be 4-laned was in 1970 from US 78 to I-26.
In 1974, US 17 ALT was 4-laned within the Georgetown City Limits.
In 1975, US 17 ALT was 4-laned on its US 52 duplex in Moncks Corner.
In 1979, US 17 ALT was 4-laned on its SC 63 duplex in Walterboro.
Since the late 1990s, US 17 ALT has been 4-laned in pieces out from I-26 out to at least US 176, though no official maps through 2006 show it.
Comment: US 17 ALT is no longer (if it ever was) a good viable alternative to US 17. It would make much more sense to have it redesignated as US 15 below Walterboro and US 701 from Walterboro to Georgetown.
US 17 ALT is especially slow through Summerville and Walterboro.
US 17 ALT  Decommissioned
Previous US 17 ALTs: US 17 ALT #1?: The 1938 Esso map shows the old routing of US 17 through Rantowles and Ravenel as US 17 ALT. The 1938-40 Official SC Maps show this road as secondary. The route is today's SC 162, SC 174 in Adams Run, and S-10-40.
US 17 ALT #2:Created as new construction in 1954 or 1955. Ran from US 17 (current US 17-SC 170 south split) southeast to a new toll bridge into Savannah, Georgia. This became mainline US 17 in about 1994.

Last Update: 17 July 2006

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