MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The city of Myrtle Beach can add the recent tropical depression to the on-going list of reasons why the new ocean outfall continues to be under construction months after its original completion date.
The contractor has a few more segments of piping to put into the outfall before workers create an upturn at the end of the piping to finish off the project, said Mark Kruea, spokesperson for the city of Myrtle Beach.
Kruea said this is the fourth deep water ocean outfall the city has built.
Large pipes will guide water from the land underneath the ocean and spit it out 1,100 feet offshore.
The goal is to improve the water quality in the swimming area, reduce beach erosion and improve beach aesthetics.
Construction started in September 2014 and the original projected completion date was November 2015.
The progress depends heavily on the weather.
"It's in an environment that's not necessarily under human control because you're dealing with the ocean and Mother Nature," Kruea said. "We've had some storms, water activity as well. It's something that's not going to be rushed. It's going to take what time it takes."
Kruea said the anticipated completion is now early July.
Paul Nalepa, of 2nd Avenue Pier, said the outfall project has slowed down business.
"We've got a lot of people who call up here all the time and ask about if they're still doing it over here," Nalepa said.
He said the construction activity affects the quality of the fishing from the pier.
"Fish don't like that muddy water, a lot of noise, banging, all of that from when they were digging on the reef," Nalepa said.
Tourists said they think the barge and crane are unsightly.
"I was like, 'Are they going to move it?' because it was in the way of the view and we come out here to enjoy the beach and the sun and everything," said Kalen Small, of Lancaster, S.C. "Nobody really wants to look at that, but if it helps the ocean, then I guess we can deal with that."