Proposed Carolina Forest townhome development causes uproar in nearby neighborhoods

Carolina Forest residents protest new townhome community

HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) - One Horry County councilman is taking action after plans for new townhomes caused an uproar among some people in several Carolina Forest neighborhoods.

The proposal is for two strips of townhouses just off the rights-of-way on Gardner Lacy Road.

Since that’s where the project is located, that’s where several concerned neighbors decided to gather Monday, with petitions in hand.

Cherie Reid, who lives in the South Creek neighborhood, said when she heard about the project to build 97 new towhomes, she decided to do everything in her power to stop it from happening.

“This woods will be torn down,” said Reid. “The areas here already flood. The traffic on this road is terrible. Home values will go down. They’re just not thinking.”

The property is up for rezoning at the planning commission meeting on Thursday.

Reid created a petition to try to keep it from going any further.

“A lot of people have the idea, well we as an individual can’t do anything,” said Reid. “If a lot of communities come together, yes they can.”

Reid and her neighbors set up an information table on Gardner Lacy Road, so people could stop to sign the petition.

She also asked people to reach out to Horry County Councilman Johnny Vaught, who represents the district.

Vaught called the engineer and asked him to defer the project until they could set up community meetings.

“They don’t have to worry about it going forward until after we have those meetings,” said Vaught.

Vaught said he’s working with each of the three nearby neighborhoods to set up those meetings. He’d like to have them in-person if his constituents are willing.

“You know, you need to face somebody to get a point across,” said Vaught. “You need to be able to look our constituents in the eye, and this virtual stuff sucks as far as I’m concerned.”

Reid’s goal is 1,000 signatures, but it looks like her concerns have already been heard.

“Usually nationally you can’t do anything, state-wise, but you sure should be able to do something local, if everybody works together,” said Reid.

The project was supposed to go through the planning commission this week before having a public hearing next week, which would be virtual.

Vaught said it’s been deferred from both of those until he can have his community meetings with each of the neighborhoods.

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