Connecting Mt. Pleasant and Sullivan's Island over the Intracoastal Waterway, the original swing-span Ben Sawyer Bridge was built in 1945. In 1989, it took a major hit from Hurricane Hugo, which knocked its swing span into the waterway at a 45 degree angle. In the 20 years following the storm, the bridge fell into serious disrepair, especially along the slowly crumbling, narrow walkway. After a series of public hearings, the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) opted to maintain the Ben Sawyer Bridge's aesthetic appearance and replace it with a comparable structure. Tugboats transported a new steel replacement span — one that looked a little paler and wider than the green original — up the waterway behind Sullivan's Island and set it up in early 2010. With a wider walkway and functional turnstyle, East Cooper residents and visitors are stylin' as they traverse the marshy causeway.
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