NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – North Myrtle Beach city officials are currently in the due diligence process, with the hopes of eventually preserving the land known as Ingram Dunes, according to spokesperson Pat Dowling.
The city has been working with the property owners in the hopes of eventually negotiating a price of purchase for the land.
"It's going to be a well-researched, due diligence offer and it will be a serious offer when and if we can make it," said Dowling.
The property has the potential to either be developed into 31 single-family lots, or preserved. Right now, the zoning for the land allows for those 31 lots.
"We know that the property owner is interested in moving forward one way or the other," Dowling said.
The city is hoping to wrap up the process within 90 days, according to Dowling.
Advocates for the preservation of the land expressed happiness, but Damien Triouleyre also said there's a few things that need to be worked out.
"How much will the city contribute? How much are we expected to raise?" Triouleyre said.
Dowling said an estimate for that breakdown is three quarters of the money coming from the city and a major foundation, with the rest coming from the public.
"The public amount is probably somewhere around $500,000," Dowling said, "We're at the point now where if there is a foundation and people know about it, they need to put that foundation in contact with the city and we need to determine if their money is real or hypothetical because hypothetical money will not buy Ingram Dunes."
In terms of how much the dunes are worth, Dowling said the city has heard numbers anywhere from $3 to $5 million. However, North Myrtle Beach officials won't have an exact offer until they've gone and done a complete evaluation of the property.
The realtor representing the Ingram family, Scott Jackson, said all parties seem to be on the same page at this point. He said the family is aware of the desire to preserve the dunes and they are certainly on board with that.