Hotels, city split cost for new crosswalks in MB - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Hotels, city split cost for new crosswalks in MB

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - More crosswalks will be dotting Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach, as the city aims to improve pedestrian safety along the popular road.

Throughout the month of October, construction crews will be installing 10 new crosswalks and medians along various points of Ocean Boulevard between 5th Avenue South and 26th Avenue North.

City of Myrtle Beach spokesman Mark Kruea estimates the cost of the project will run anywhere from $100,000 to $150,000 to complete - but the city isn't footing the entire bill.

A handful of hotels will be chipping in around $3,000 each to help reduce the cost of the project for the city. City leaders say the installation of the new crosswalks will ultimately benefit the businesses they were in front of, and that's why the city proposed splitting the cost with those hotels.

"Since they are in the middle of the block, they do benefit the businesses in the middle of those blocks," Kruea said. "We asked businesses, 'Would you like to split the cost with us?' Surprisingly, they have been. That's a great public-private project, so we're pleased with the success."

Frans Mustert, of Oceana Resorts, says his company chose to chip in on the project because it's directly benefiting their guests.

"[If it benefits] our business, if it benefits tourism, we're more than happy to participate in any of these projects," Mustert said.

Officials say the crosswalks to be installed throughout October are coming at a larger price. That's because they weren't grouped with a larger project, like the re-design of Ocean Boulevard, and will include lighting.

Mustert says the crosswalks are much needed because of increased pedestrian traffic, as more resorts locate parking and check-in facilities across Ocean Boulevard from their main towers.

Copyright 2011 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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