Charleston in the News - October 2019
What "Bigbelly Bins" in Charleston Mean for the City!
Have you noticed the new trash cans downtown? Before Hurricane Dorian made its appearance in early September, the City placed 100 new solar-powered trash cans around downtown, and more will be placed in West Ashley and the East Side soon. These new "Bigbelly Bins" are projected to save the City $200,000 a year. There has already been a noticeable difference for the sanitation workers who no longer have to conduct routine trash checks and can instead focus more time on street sweeping. These cans are designed so that once trash is thrown into them, they compact the items to allow more trash to be accumulated than can be by "air-exposed" trash cans. Another innovative factor is that once the trash in a can reaches a certain level and hits a sensor, an email notification is sent to the City's Environmental Services Division to replace the can. With the trash compacted, the need for trash bags is also down and the City plans to reduce its monthly use of plastic bags from about 18,000 to under 3,000 bags! Other benefits of these cans include trash not flying out and littering the streets as well as less bad odors given off when the wind picks up. The City has only signed a five-year lease but with such good feedback already it seems possible that these might become a new norm in Charleston's busy streets. Read More Here...
MUSC Receives a Grant for Nearly $835,000!!
The NIH HEAL Initiative, also known as the Helping End Addiction Long-term Initiative, recently gave out 375 grants to hospitals - including MUSC - across 41 states to help fund scientific research to reverse the national opioid crisis. The NIH HEAL Initiative was launched in 2018 with the goal of finding innovative ways to treat chronic pain, curb opioid rates and misuse that lead to disorders, as well as achieve long-term recovery from opioid addiction. Currently, several MUSC departments provide care to patients suffering from chronic pain and MUSC plans to use this one-year grant to form multidisciplinary teams composed of researchers and health care providers to conduct clinical trials. Having Charleston as its main hub is a huge advantage for MUSC since it will be able to connect with other sites across the state to conduct these trials. To read more about MUSC's plans, Click Here.
A Major Road Expansion in Berkeley County is Finally Approved for I-26!
The State has approved the widening of a 6-mile stretch of I-26 in Berkeley County between Jedburg Road in Summerville and S.C. Highway 27! With the recent increase of people moving to Berkeley County, there is more congestion on the roads, and adding a third lane in this area is intended to help address this issue. This road expansion comes after the S.C. Department of Transportation surveyed locals to see how they thought this problem of congestion should be tackled. It will be a little time before this project gets off the ground, probably not until late 2021 or early 2022 but they do plan to add various corrective measures in the mean time to help. In the medium term they plan to add signals on ramps that can sense the amount of traffic and allow drivers to safely enter the interstate. In the long term they intend to convert one of the lanes into a "High Occupancy Toll lane" which would require drivers to pay a fee to use that lane. Read More Here...