NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Coastal community leaders met Wednesday to discuss projects they’d like to see come to life, heightening dunes and flood prevention being some of them.
At Wednesday’s Coastal Alliance meeting members discussed bringing the dunes in the Surfside Beach and Garden City area up to nine feet in height.
"Their program says 7 feet and they want to change it to 9 feet, so they're going to be adding more sand to their dunes,” said North Myrtle Beach Mayor Marilyn Hatley.
But before any sand is moved, studies by the Army Corps of Engineers have to be done. “Why we need this nourishment, what it does to our economy, how it affects the structures on our beaches, how it affects tourism,” are just some of the things Hatley said the study will look into.
This is something the Coastal Alliance Committee plans to work with the Army Corps of Engineers to complete.
"It takes a long time for these studies to become and as you heard even starting today it would be at least five years before the projects are permitted and funded.
Coastal Alliance wants the Army Corps to include making Arcadian Shores part of the Myrtle Beach Shore Protection Project in that study.
"There's the need for work and renourishment in building the dunes up in the Arcadian Shores area. The main reason is to protect the properties."
Representatives from Horry County were at the meeting and said it's funded renourishment on that portion of the beach in the past, but including them in the shore protection project would help lower the cost on the county’s behalf.
"The investment that people have put into those properties and it needs to be protected."
Hog Inlet is also another area the Coastal Alliance committee discussed during the meeting.
This is a project the city of North Myrtle Beach has wanted to spearhead for some time now, and Mayor Marilyn Hatley says now is the time to get it going.
Larger pipes would help the flow of the water and prevent flooding in that area. Hatley said they will work with the Army Corps to get the project moving, but it's unclear just how much it will cost.
Studies coastal alliance expects to complete with the army corps will give a better idea of how much money will need to be put into projects like this one.
Another area of concern for Mayor Hatley is White Point Swash. She said the water is not flowing correctly in that area, causing homes to flood or be threatened by potential flooding and it's something she wants fixed sooner rather than later.
"There is a permit to bring back the march to where the original outlet is but it, as you heard today, they’re talking about February, and I’m saying you can’t wait until February because works got to be done immediately,” said Hatley.
The Coastal Alliance plans to meet again at the end of January.