DARLINGTON, SC (WMBF) - There is a big push happening right now to bring new jobs to the City of Darlington. More than 250 job opportunities are anticipated.
City leaders hope when the retailer comes - it will not only attract other big name stores, but will meet the need for more retail business in Darlington.
Highway 52 Business and Governor Williams Highway is one of Darlington's busiest intersections. Plans to increase traffic are underway.
“We're talking about 255 jobs. These are in retail, these are good jobs, and we think that would add a lot to our economy,” Darlington Mayor Tony Watkins said.
Watkins said he couldn't say which retailer could bring the jobs, but he did show WMBF News where the store would set up shop.
Negotiations to build on the land, have been in the works since the recession hit, and are now in the final stages.
City leaders said there is not necessarily an incentives package being put together to get those jobs to the area – but the city will have to make changes to the road.
“Obviously, there are roadway improvements off site. These are things that are required by the SCDOT anytime you have a large commercial operation you are going to have a lot of traffic,” Watkins said.
An increase in traffic is what small mom-and-pop businesses are hoping to cash in on.
“It will probably bring more foot traffic through the town or whatever so everyone is not going to Hartsville and Florence. I guess it helps in certain ways and hurts in certain ways,” Pete Nikolakakos, business owner said.
Pete Nikolakakos,is the owner of Nick's Bar-B-Que house, just down the street from where that big retailer is expected to move in.
He said while he thinks his businesses will benefit from the possible big news, other stores may not.
“It could shut down the local hardware stores and local feed and seed,” Nikolakakos said.
But he added that it's time for a big job announcement to come to the City of Darlington.
Right now, it's not clear when the name of that retailer will be shared or when those jobs will be up for grabs.
“People of Darlington will reward their business because there is a lot of pent-up demand in Darlington,” Watkins said.
The hopes to have everything signed sealed and delivered within the next few months.