South Carolina Highway 61

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SC Highway 61 marker

SC Highway 61
Route information
Maintained by SCDOT
Length: 67.3 mi[1] (108.3 km)
Existed: 1923 – present
Ashley River Road
Major junctions
West end: US 78 near Branchville
  US 21 near Branchville
I‑95 near Walterboro
I‑526 in Charleston
SC 165 near Summerville
US 17 in Charleston
East end: SC 30 in Charleston
Counties: Charleston, Dorchester, Colleton, Bamberg
Highway system
SC 60 SC 63

South Carolina Highway 61 is a 67.3-mile (108.3 km) long highway in the U.S. state of South Carolina. The highway is designated on an east–west direction, from U.S. Route 78 near Branchville to South Carolina Highway 30 in Charleston. The portion of Highway 61 from Church Creek Bridge and ten miles (16 km) north is designated a National Scenic Byway. [2]

Route description[edit]

St. Andrew's Boulevard[edit]

The east-most section of Highway 61 is named St. Andrew's Boulevard. This section runs from Highway 17 to Highway 171. It is mostly residential buildings that have been rezoned commercial.

Ashley River Road[edit]

Ashley River Road is the portion of Highway 61 that runs through Charleston near the Ashley River from Highway 171 to SC 165. It is four lanes near Sam Rittenberg Blvd., but becomes two lanes through the scenic stretch. Along the two-lane stretch, there are many large oaks and historic plantations. The Highway 61/Ashley River Road exit from I-526 actually exits onto Paul Cantrell Boulevard.

Points of interest along Ashley River Road:

Beech Hill Road[edit]

Beech Hill Road is the section of Highway 61 that runs from Highway 165 to Highway 17A. The Legend Oaks Plantation is south of this section of highway.

Augusta Highway[edit]

Augusta Highway is the longest section of Highway 61 from Highway 17A to the west-most end of Highway 61 where it merges into Highway 78.

National Register of Historic Places[edit]

Ashley River Road
Ashley River Road 2.9 mi N of Bees Ferry Rd 2.JPG
Ashley River Road 2.9 mi N of Bees Ferry Rd 2
Nearest city Summerville, South Carolina
Area 95 acres (38 ha)
Built 1691
Governing body State
Part of Ashley River Historic District (#93001514)
NRHP Reference # 83003831[3]
Added to NRHP November 21, 1983

Some or all of Ashley River Road was named to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.[3][4][5] In 1993, it was included in the Ashley River Historic District.

Major Intersections[edit]

Future Developments[edit]

Developers continue to build more homes further and further down Ashley River Rd. A great deal of controversy was created about overdevelopment when the City of North Charleston annexed the 6,600-acre tract known as Watson Hill. The tract was sold by MeadWestvaco to private developers who then requested the annexation by North Charleston. The town of Summerville tried to rush an annexation to block North Charleston which ended in a court battle. Summerville later rescinded and backed away from its annexation attempt. The slump in the economy, 2008-2010, forced these developers to sell and the property was repurchased by MeadWestvaco.[6][7] A plan for lower density development was then presented to North Charleston. It is obvious that more houses equates to more traffic on the already congested two-lane road. The people living in the homes want the road widened for them. Developers want it widened to justify building more homes. However, expanding the road will require the removal of many of the oak trees. Because the oaks are the reason that the highway was granted National Scenic Byway status, removal of the oaks will cause it to lose the status and lose National Scenic Byway Federal funding for maintenance.[citation needed]

A recent public meeting suggested that if development is to occur, instead of widening Ashley River Road to alleviate congestion, Glenn McConnell Parkway, also known as SC Highway 461, could be extended beyond its terminus at Bees Ferry Road. This is possible since Glenn McConnell Parkway runs parallel to Highway 61.


  1. ^ Angel Fire's South Carolina Highway guide
  2. ^ Bill Information - South Carolina Legislature Online
  3. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2010-07-09. 
  4. ^ Wylie, Suzanne Pickens; Norman McCorkle (August 23, 1983). "Ashley River Road" (PDF). National Register of Historic Places - Nomination and Inventory. Retrieved 9 June 2012. 
  5. ^ "Ashley River Road, Charleston County (S.C. Hwy. 61 btw. Church Creek & S.C. Hwy. 165, Charleston & Summerville vicinities, Charleston & Dorchester Counties)". National Register Properties in South Carolina. South Carolina Department of Archives and History. Retrieved 9 June 2012. 
  6. ^
  7. ^

External links[edit]