Myrtle Beach hopes cycling improvements earns it Bike Friendly Community designation

Myrtle Beach hopes cycling improvements earns it Bike Friendly Community designation

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – If you’re an avid cyclist, then the city of Myrtle Beach wants to hear from you.

The city of Myrtle Beach is waiting to find out if its cycling infrastructure improvements will earn it a Bike Friendly Community designation from the League of American Bicyclists. The results, however, depend on a survey that is open now for anyone who enjoys cycling in the city.

This is the second time the city of Myrtle Beach has been eligible for the Bike Friendly Community designation. The city feels like it has made some improvements to get that designation this time around.

Gary Bennett, the lead technician at Pee Dee Bicycle Company, said those improvements have been noticed, but there’s still room to grow.

“We need to really think about the future, and if we have the room to build more [cycling] infrastructure, build it, because it’s going to come back to us in a positive way,” said Bennett.

Bennett sees a constant flow of customers that like to bike at The Market Common.

He’s been excited by some of the bicycle infrastructure improvements lately, like the lane widening and pathway project in Carolina Forest.

That being said, he’s got a few projects in mind that he thinks would benefit the cycling community.

“It’d be great to have more ways to connect all the areas of the county into the city, so you could ride without being worried about getting on a public road or a busy area,” said Bennett.

The city of Myrtle Beach applied for the Bike Friendly Community designation from the League of American Bicyclists. City Planner Kelly Mezzapelle feels like Myrtle Beach deserves it this time around.

“We actually applied about four years ago and were given an honorable mention with a long list of suggestions we could do to improve our score, and we’ve taken that list to heart, all of their advice,” said Mezzapelle.

Some of the recent improvements include a 20-mile bicycle loop around the city that’s nearly complete and bike lanes running the entire length of Ocean Boulevard.

The city has also made a lot of progress in the East Coast Greenway project, which will run from Florida to Maine.

“The city of Myrtle Beach was the first city community on the East Coast to complete our segment of the East Coast Greenway,” said Mezzapelle. “So, that is in, complete from North end to South end.”

The League of American Bicyclists created a survey for cyclists in the city to submit feedback on the number of cycling options and safety of cycling within the city.

The results of that survey will help the league determine whether or not the city deserves the Bike Friendly Community designation.

The survey is open to anyone familiar with bicycling in Myrtle Beach. To fill out the survey, click here.

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