Plan calls for new shopping center, traffic changes in Carolina Forest

CAROLINA FOREST, SC (WMBF) - New stores could be in the works for Carolina Forest.

Horry County Planning and Zoning has received a sketch plan from  DDC Engineers.  Plans call for a new shopping center in the middle of an already busy area.  If plans are approved, the center would sit off US-501, between the Tanger Outlets and Forest Square Plaza - that's the plaza across from the Carolina Forest Kroger.

If passed, we could potentially see a new grocery store and retail shops.

"A movie theater would be terrific, one of the parcels calls for a slot that's 45,000 square feet, that's about the size for something like a Target or Trader Joe's," says Bo Ives with the Carolina Forest Civic Association.

Due to a non-disclosure agreement, we can't get specific information about the proposal.  As far as when we could see construction, right now, the land is covered in trees, which means a lot of work would have to be done.

"The environmental permits are the wildcard. They could take a very long time, or if it's not so significant, they could be reviewed and approved, and that's what they're waiting to see - exactly how much of a backlog there will be in doing an environmental permit," says Ives.

If the shopping center is approved, we could also see changes to traffic in the area. This plan calls for an extension of Glenforest Rd., which would allow you to get from the Tanger Outlets to Carolina Forest Boulevard without using 501.

"To take traffic off 501 doesn't just help the volume of traffic, it helps safety, and this could be a way that you can safely egress from Tanger and Carolina Forest - that's a big thing," says Ives.

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