Finance and Operations; OUR Clemson

Perimeter Road lanes to open, shift in crucial new phase of construction


The Perimeter Road widening project will soon enter a new phase as construction nears completion in October. This next phase will last approximately a month and is crucial to the success of the project.

On August 28, crews began milling—removing the top layer of asphalt to prepare for final paving—and installing binder, a layer of asphalt that will help the top layer stick to the base layers. Barring inclement weather and other factors, crews will make all efforts to safely open Perimeter Road to four-lane traffic before the first home football game on September 9.

On September 11, Perimeter Road will return to two lanes and final surface paving will begin. Paving is expected to last two weeks and will require several lane closures and traffic pattern shifts, though two lanes will always remain open. Paving crews will work to pave one lane at a time between Highway 76 and Centennial Boulevard to mitigate joints that could cause eventual potholes and cracks in the road. 

“Our Construction Manager at Risk, Archer Western Construction, is well versed in projects of this scope,” said Todd Barnette, chief facilities officer. “They have planned for the maintenance of traffic for normal Clemson University operations as well as special events such as football for the last 17 months of construction. They committed to having no less traffic capacity than in years past and increased capacity of four traffic lanes for the first home football game this year. I have faith in their ability.”

For home football games on September 16 and 23, University Facilities also plans to open all four lanes on the Friday before and close two lanes for paving on the following Monday, weather permitting.

Once paved, the final phase of the project will begin.

Upcoming schedule (weather permitting)

Aug. 28–Sept. 8: Milling and installing binder throughout the remaining lanes from Cherry Road to Highway 76.

Sept. 9: All lanes open (weather permitting).

Sept. 11 (9 a.m.): Perimeter Road will return to two lanes and final surface paving will begin.

Sept. 11–26: Final paving will begin. There will be several lane closures, rolling closures, and traffic pattern shifts during this period to ensure a successful surface asphalt course. Two lanes will remain open.

Sept. 27: Paving complete. All lanes open. Expect periodic single lane closures to work on shoulders, sidewalks, landscaping, and other areas.

Note: The same process of reopening all four lanes of Perimeter on Friday night and then closing again Monday morning will also be done for the football games on September 16 and September 23. 

Aerial view of Perimeter Road at Cherry Road
Perimeter Road at Cherry Road
Aerial view of Perimeter Road at Hunnicutt Creek crossing
Hunnicutt Creek crossing beneath Perimeter Road
Aerial view of Perimeter Road at the C-1 lot
Perimeter Road at the C-1 lot

Perimeter Road by the numbers

The widening project, which began in March 2022, will increase the 1.3 miles of University-owned Perimeter Road to four lanes. The project expanded its scope west of Old Stadium Road in April 2023 without extending the contractual completion date of October 30, 2023, despite 80 days of prohibitive weather delays. Once completed, the road will feature 57 streetlights, 5,725 tons of asphalt surface, new landscaping and a multimodal pedestrian pathway with safety lighting, security cameras and blue light emergency phones.

Perimeter Road by the numbers

Perimeter Road does more than provide an avenue for cars and pedestrians. In addition to armoring a subterranean Hunnicutt Creek crossing tunnel with headwalls, crews on the project have installed vital utility and roadway infrastructure, including:

  • Three stormwater ponds to provide water quality and quantity
  • 12,551 feet (2.38 miles) of stormwater piping
  • 4,818 feet (.91 miles) of 8” water line
  • Three high voltage duct banks
  • 6,864 feet (1.3 miles) of lighting power distribution
  • 10,200 feet (1.5 miles) of fiber optic/data duct
  • 15,005 feet (2.84 miles) of concrete curb and gutter
  • 50,908,000 (25,454 tons) asphalt base and binder
  • Six total traffic signals (four relocated and upgraded, two new)