Interstate 185 (South Carolina)
I-185 highlighted in red
|Maintained by SCDOT|
|Length||17.70 mi (28.49 km)|
|South end||I-385 near Mauldin|
| US 276 near Mauldin|
I-85 near Greenville
US 25 near Greenville
US 29 in Greenville
|North end||US 29 at Henrydale Drive in Greenville|
Interstate 185 (I-185) is a 17.7-mile (28.5 km) highway located entirely in Greenville County, South Carolina. I-185 serves as a spur route of Interstate 85 into the city of Greenville as well as a shortcut route for drivers accessing Interstate 385 from northbound I-85. A portion of this road is tolled and is known as the "Southern Connector".
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (August 2012)
The Southern Connector was constructed as a public-private partnership between the South Carolina Department of Transportation and Interwest Carolina Transportation Group, LLC, a development team that included a not-for-profit corporation called Connector 2000 Association, Inc. (C2A). Under this agreement, C2A operates the toll road under a fifty year license. They were responsible for financing, designing, constructing, operating and maintaining the road during this period and the toll revenue would be used to pay them for these efforts. To finance the project, C2A sold bonds that were tax-exempt under IRS Rule 63-20, which provides that the bonds sold will be exempt if they finance an activity which is "public in nature."
The highway opened in February 2001, nine months ahead of schedule. By 2007, the Connector 2000 Association was having financial difficulties because ridership on the toll road was not meeting original estimates. In the fall of 2007, the association began looking for a concessionaire to take over the operation and financial liability of the toll road. By early 2008, C2A had received a default notice from their bond trustee In January 2010, the bond trustee missed an interest payment, and the C2A was more than $8 million behind in its payments to SCDOT for the maintenance and license fees under their agreement. On June 24, 2010, the Southern Connector filed for bankruptcy.
The corporation emerged from bankruptcy on March 28, 2011 by restructuring bond debt and their concession and maintenance agreement with SCDOT. Tolls were raised on January 2, 2012 as part of the settlement.
There are two toll plazas located along the Southern Connector, known as the east and west plazas. Toll booths are located on entrance/exit ramps on Fork Shoals Road (exit 4) and Piedmont Highway (exit 10). The toll plazas have both electronic toll collection (ETC) and cash lanes; toll booths located on ramps accept only ETC or exact change only. Those that do not have exact change or do not pay the toll can fill out a "Pledge Payment Form"; violators have 30 days to remit payment before administrative fees are added to the toll due.
Only the Palmetto Pass is accepted on the Southern Connector.
|Location||Payment||2 axles||3 axles||4 axles||5 axles||6+ axles|
|Fork Shoals Road
Northbound entrance/Southbound exit ramps
|SC 20 (Piedmont Highway)
Northbound exit/Southbound entrance ramps
The northern portion, which runs from Interstate 85 to the Greenville city limits, was opened in the 1960s and is co-signed with U.S. 29. The southern portion, which connects the I-85/I-185 interchange (exit 42) with the I-385/U.S. 276 interchange (exit 30), was opened as a toll road in 2001. This extension was dubbed the "Southern Connector" and increased I-185 from three to seventeen miles (27 km) in length.
The entire route is in Greenville County.
|Mauldin||0.00||0.00||–||I-385 north – Greenville, Spartanburg, Mauldin||Southern terminus|
|1B||I-385 south – Columbia||Southbound exit and northbound entrance; to I-26 east|
|1A||Neely Ferry Road / Standing Springs Road||Southbound exit and northbound entrance|
|||2.4||3.9||East Toll plaza|
|||3.9||6.3||4||Fork Shoals Road||Tolled northbound exit ramp, southbound on ramp|
|||7.0||11.3||7||US 25 (Augusta Road) – Ware Place, Greenville||Signed as exits 7A (north) and 7B (south) northbound|
|Golden Grove||9.8||15.8||10||SC 20 (Piedmont Highway) – Greenville, Piedmont||Tolled southbound exit ramp, northbound on ramp|
|||11.2||18.0||West Toll plaza|
|||12.2||19.6||12||SC 153 north to US 123 – Easley, Clemson||Southern terminus of SR 153|
|||14.2||22.9||14||I-85 / US 29 south – Spartanburg, Atlanta||Southern end of US 29 concurrency; signed as exits 14A (north) and 14B (south)|
|Greenville||15.2||24.5||15||US 25 (White Horse Road) – Travelers Rest||Northbound exit and southbound entrance|
|16.0||25.7||16||US 25 / SC 20 (Grove Road) – Piedmont||Southbound exit and northbound entrance|
|17.70||28.49||–||US 29 north (Mills Avenue) / Henrydale Avenue – Greenville||Northern terminus; northern end of US 29 concurrency; at-grade intersection|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi|
- "Auxiliary Routes of the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System Of Interstate and Defense Highways as of October 31, 2002". Federal Highway Administration.
- Samuel, Peter (October 26, 2007). "Greenville Southern Connector up for concession offers – not-for-profit ailing". TollRoadsNews.
- "27-in-7 Peak Performance" (PDF). South Carolina Department of Transportation. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 17, 2013.
- Hedlund, Karen J. (May 1, 2001). "The Use of '63-20' Nonprofit Corporations in Infrastructure Facility Development". Nossaman Infrastructure.
- "Partners unveil Southern Connector" (Press release). Southern Connector Toll Road. February 16, 2001.
- "Request for Toll Road Concessionaire Qualifications" (PDF). Connector 2000 Association. September 27, 2007.
- "Notice of an Event of Default" (PDF). U.S. Bancorp. January 23, 2008.
- "Event Notice No. 2010-1" (PDF). Connector 2000 Association. January 11, 2010.
- "Balance Sheet" (PDF). Connector 2000 Association. September 30, 2009.
- Bathon, Michael; McCarty, Dawn (June 25, 2010). "Connector 2000 Association Files Bankruptcy in South Carolina". Businessweek.
- "Judge OKs Southern Connector's reorganization plan". gsabusiness.com/. SCBiz News. March 28, 2011. Retrieved February 26, 2016.
- "Southern Connector to bump rates in January". gsabusiness.com/. SCBiz News. December 29, 2011. Retrieved February 26, 2016.
- "Southern Connector FAQ's". South Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
- "Southern Connector: Cash Toll Rates". South Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 12, 2014.
- "Southern Connector: Pal Pass Toll Rates". South Carolina Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 12, 2014.