Safety, business prime concerns for booming Burgess community

Burgess growth
A section of Burgess, Source: Google Maps
A section of Burgess, Source: Google Maps

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Burgess has already been established as one of the fastest-growing areas in the county, with some even comparing to the growth in Carolina Forest.

With this residential growth, new business is also making its way in, but some community members are saying not so fast. They want to make sure there are specific guidelines for any new business coming in, and they also want to make sure it's a right fit.

Alex Holley took an in-depth look at the future of this growing community, and finds that for residents, it's not just a matter of business, but of safety as well.

The community and the county have been coming together to update the Burgess Community Plan, to make sure the community will grow in the right direction. This will monitor the look of new businesses, how close they set up to the roadway,  how tall they can be, and what type of signage will be used. But it will also dictate the area — people living in Burgess want to limit the amount of businesses coming to Holmestown road, right next to homes, and instead push it all on busy Highway 707. That way, it will be easier to manage once the roadway widens.

On Thursday, there will be a public hearing to hear from the community at 6 p.m.

The community also wants to address storm water issues. Burgess is already a low-lying area of the county, and storm water is always a big concern. If a Category 3 hurricane were to come through the area, 97 percent of Burgess would be underwater, commercial development is one of the big factors that causes drainage issues.

So, the community is calling on the county to manage the amount of impact that commercial development can have. This would be through landscaping and how these businesses can be accessed. The county says overlays are always a big concern — because they address how the main areas of the county should look and how safe they can be. The Burgess area overlay has already been in place for almost ten years, and so now it's time to bring it up to standards. After the public hearing this evening, the overlay will have to be approved by county council.