NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Like many other dune walkovers along the Grand Strand, the one at 21st Avenue was on its last leg after taking hard hits from the ocean.
"It just died a natural death," Jan Runyan said.
Thursday, construction crews moved forward with the demolition of a walkover that residents said took quite the beating from the Atlantic.
"It was built a little low, and because it was a little low and long, when the high tide came in the high tide rotted the wood underneath," Bruce Campbell explained.
"I think it should be built over the dunes, so the dunes don't get harmed when we have bad storms," Runyan added.
Pat Dowling, spokesman for the City of North Myrtle Beach, said the double dune walkover will be replaced by a single walkover with a 12 by 12 seating area, which residents were informed of.
"The walkway is going to be elevated to get above the dunes ... and then to get down to the sand, it's going to be a double handicap ramp to get down from the elevation," Jeff Burrell said.
The city said it tries to repair and replace dune walkovers each year and residents know just how important it is to keep up with the walkovers and the beach in general.
"The beach is the most important thing and, unfortunately over time, it does erode, and beach renourishment is such a big part. It's expensive but it keeps the beach nice," Campbell said.
City officials said the storms this past year took a very heavy toll on the beach and now it is in need of 1.7 million cubic yards of sand. That is up substantially from the 750,000 cubic yards of sand they put in during the last federal beach renourishment project about ten years ago.
"The ocean takes whatever man can create. That's the bottom line." Burrell said.
Unless the city gets emergency funding, the nine mile stretch of beach will stay as is until the next federal renourishment project scheduled in 2018.
As for the dune walkover at 21st Avenue South, it should be completed in the next 30 days.