Grand Strand gears up with goals for 2015

Grand Strand gears up with goals for 2015
HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - It's officially the New Year, which means you've probably got a resolution or two in mind, how about goals for the Grand Strand?

Every new year, seems to start with the same goals. "We're gonna [sic] get healthier. We're gonna [sic] start walking and exercising," said Joe and Peggy Rogers.

2015 is about seeing through resolutions, and building new ones. 

Several new restaurants have opened in the past year, like Co-Sushi and Lincoln Park, and Tupelo Honey is in the process of being built, but locals think they could open some more.

"I'd love to see the cheesecake factory move in here," said Diane Martin, referring to the Market Common.

We've seen new stores like Publix and Hobby Lobby pop up in North Myrtle Beach, as well as hotels and homes across the Grand Strand, but people say we need to make more room for the growth. Peggy Rogers notes the need for parking in places like the Old Pavillion and at the Market Common, especially when there's big events, like a Southern Times Square.

"If you go out and they're having an event here, you can't find a place to park when you come in and that's a little frustrating,” said Rogers.

Whether it's parking, or driving, it always goes back to our roads. Progress on road construction made the list for changes you want to see in 2015.

The projects that kicked off this year, like Glenns Bay and Highway 707, won't wrap up in 2015, but many people are ready to see what's in store for Ride III. Ride III, meaning that extra penny tax on your bill, to help Horry County improve our roads.

"Traffic patterns just don't seem like they're real consistent, it's hard to get around,” said Phil Mackey.

2015 means coming up with a concrete list for those Ride III road projects. One of 10 proposed ideas, is a new road connecting Mr Joe White Avenue, to River Oaks Drive and to Carolina Forest Boulevard.

The need for more infrastructure goes hand in hand with the growth our area is seeing.

New industries, like Startek, bringing in hundreds of jobs to Carolina Forest, is building hope for more year-round jobs, to come.

"Me and plenty of other people, we only have about four or five months out of the year to make our money, then come winter we have to work two or maybe three jobs,"
said Emily Swearingen, of Carolina Forest.

Others are on board with a year-round push, not just for jobs, but for events.

"Livening up the city in the winter, instead of just having the big rush in the summer tourism season,” said Myrtle Beach resident Derek Nunemacher.

When we do have the rush, people hope we'll grab a handle on the crowds. Scott took to Facebook with a concern for Memorial Day Weekend, after the violence this year. He wants to come up with a system to hold events accountable for the crimes that take place while they're happening.

Memorial Day Weekend will carry over as a focus for police and grand strand leaders in the new year. Traffic loops and more patrols, are already in store.

The majority of the goals for 2015 revolve around one thing, making sure we're safe.

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