NMB to move forward with $6.5M road improvements

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The City of North Myrtle Beach announced it is moving forward with nearly $7 million worth of road improvements in the Crescent Beach section.

The $6.5 million will cover two projects: widening of Ocean Boulevard from 15th Avenue South to 28th Avenue South and utility work along the same stretch.

The widening project will be funded by the SCDOT and is an estimated $3.5 million cost.

Nearly one mile of two-lane road along Ocean Boulevard is scheduled to be widened. Sidewalks are set to be replaced and added. In addition, crosswalks and drainage will be installed.

The project has been delayed for several years due to "a lack of funding and resulting slippage on the SCDOT work schedule," according to the news release issued by the city.

To move the SCDOT road widening project forward, the city has applied to SCDOT to qualify as a Local Public Agency (LPA), which will give the city the authority to implement and manage the project locally, says Pat Dowling, city spokesman.

The utility project will be funded by the city and Santee Cooper with an estimated cost of $3 million, according to Dowling. The project involves converting power and communications utilities from overhead to underground, according to the release.

If awarded by the SCDOT and if funding for the SCDOT road widening project remains in place, actual construction work on the underground conversion project would begin in the fall/winter of 2014. Both projects would be completed by the fall/winter of 2016.

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