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Horry County eyeing Carolina Forest as possible site for new government building

Updated: Apr. 1, 2019 at 6:20 PM EDT
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HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - The Horry County government complex at 21st Avenue North could close if the county follows through with plans to build a new government center in Carolina Forest.

Horry County Councilman Johnny Vaught said there are no set plans in place yet, and the county doesn’t have a site picked or purchased, but the old building at 21st Avenue North is getting old and overcrowded and a new building needs to be built soon.

“We’ve been talking about needing to get out of that 21st Avenue place. Everybody’s on top of each other there. There’s courtrooms in there for magistrates, there’s treasurers, assessors, auditors people in there," Vaught said.

Doloris Christy visits the office at 21st Avenue North occasionally and said it’ll be nice if that one is replaced with one closer to her home.

“It would help. I mean we don’t go there that often but there’s a lot of people in this area now. So, if they do away with that one and we have to go to Conway that would be a problem so it’d work out much better if they had one closer for this area," Christy said.

Vaught said the county would sell that land and use the proceeds from it to put towards a new facility and location.

“It’s the location as well as the cost for renovation. It’s more location than anything else. We knew we were going to have to expand and the shape of that building and all that would be, it would cost so much more to go and expand it there. Plus, the traffic in downtown Myrtle Beach is not going to get any better," Vaught said.

He said the county hasn’t had the land at 21st Avenue North appraised yet so the county isn’t sure how much it’s worth.

The idea of a police precinct in Carolina Forest is one some council members remain hopeful for.

“There are lots of things that are going to be on the table at the budget retreat," said Vaught, "We have recreation, we have police, we have fire, we have a lot of things that are going to be on the budget slate this time and its going to be a lot of tough solutions.”

County council is expected to go to budget retreat this Friday and Saturday, according to the county’s website.

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