Small businesses in demand for Carolina Forest

Small businesses in demand for Carolina Forest

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Carolina Forest is one of the fastest growing communities in Horry County and it is not slowing down.

It seems like a new store or restaurant is popping up every week, but some people who live there say the stores moving in aren't exactly what they want.

Some of the stores and people around the Carolina Forest area say they want more small businesses. They say chains are great, but it's the small, homegrown stuff that really makes a community special.

Right now, the Carolina Forest area is undergoing many changes, including road construction and bringing in new businesses.

Off International Drive, a Dunkin' Donuts will be going in across from the McDonalds.

Just a few miles away, several new shops and restaurants are going in near the intersection of Carolina Forest Boulevard and Highway 501.

Not all the tenants have been made public, but you can see the progress as you drive by it on the highway.

Former head of the Carolina Forest Civic Association Bo Ives, says he does know a drive thru Starbucks will be going in one of those buildings. An outdoor goods store will also be going in in that area. Ives says it should be close to the size of the Bass Pro Shop off Highway 17 in North Myrtle Beach.

While the progress seems to be nonstop in the area, some locals and local businesses believe the storefronts need different things in them.

"Big business is big business, but a place is unique because of its small business," said David Carpenter, Owner of Fat Cat Café. "And I know that it's possible to get more small business here and have it all be successful, but it just takes not so much government, but it takes a community to support that."

Ives says one of the options for the storefront off of International Drive was a Taco Bell but The Civic Association decided a Dunkin' Donuts would be better for the area.

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