NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - You’ll soon have to get your wallet out if you plan to park along Ocean Boulevard in North Myrtle Beach.
Beginning June 15th, the city is launching a paid parking season lasting through October.
Ten beach front parking lots are currently down to the dirt, making way for an extension to create a total of roughly 212 parking spaces.
“I think it is a great move," said Brenda Nordan who lives in North Myrtle Beach.
It’s one in a series of short-term solutions city leaders are putting in place to fix extensive parking issues. City officials said the beach lots are being built out to the conservation line, but some said they’re still concerned about the work being done.
“They’re saying that parking is an emergency but I feel like the flooding should be definitely a more important emergency. I’m really concerned that they’re not considering us," said resident Jennifer Gee.
A prime spot in a beach front parking lot will also soon cost you. Beach-goers will have to dish out $2 an hour for public parking on either side of Ocean Boulevard.
“Since they’ve said you can no longer park in the median I think it’s a much safer idea," said North Myrtle Beach resident Mary Holquist.
Many who live in North Myrtle Beach said requiring visitors to cough up some cash for a day at the beach is a small price to pay for safety, after dealing with chaotic and sometimes dangerous parking in the median.
“I’ve seen the parking along Ocean Boulevard here and it’s been dangerous. I’ve seen little kids get out of cars and, you know, parents scrambling to try and grab hands. It’s very, very busy and it’s not just in the summer, it’s year round now," said Nordan.
For people who live in North Myrtle Beach, parking will still be free.
Residents can apply for a free parking decal for cars registered to an address within city limits. Up to two permits can be issued per address, including vehicles, motorcycles, or golf carts. Residents can apply for those free parking decals at the North Myrtle Beach City Hall.