‘It’s scary’: Neighbors living in Perry Place community fight plan for new homes

Published: May. 3, 2022 at 9:18 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) - Neighbors living in one Horry County neighborhood are coming together to speak out against a project that could impact their quality of life.

A plan to bring more than two dozen new homes to the Perry Place community has folks who live there worried about what it could mean for the flooding issues that already exist.

“When it rains it puddles, and it floods on it,” said Sebastian Davis, who moved into Perry Place in 2013. “It’s unsafe.”

Davis has plenty of experience through the years of driving through what feels like a river in front of his house.

It all culminated in October 2015.

“Water got so high on my Toyota Tacoma, it actually got rust on the battery,” said Davis. “It was scary. We stayed in for two days, trapped.”

Those flooding issues are why Davis and his neighbors were shocked when they received a letter in the mail that a developer intended to add more than two dozen new homes along West Perry Road.

“They’re talking about cutting down some of these trees, and we have had major flooding on this street with the way the wetlands are currently, and we don’t want them disturbed,” said Davis’s neighbor Ruth Hartwick.

The engineer, Steve Powell, told the Horry County Planning Commission he is aware of the flooding issues and thinks he knows what’s causing the problem.

“The issue is that we’ve had five ponds through here that were interconnected by pipe,” said Powell during a planning commission meeting on April 7th. “We replaced those pipes in 2012, but they continue to overgrow and get clogged up.”

Powell’s plan is to drain the five small ponds when they add the new homes and connect all the drainage to a much larger pond further from the property.

Horry County staff recommended disapproval, while the county’s planning commission recommended approval, which means it’s been a divisive issue as it heads to the county council for a big final vote.

“Until they can show me they’re going to fix the existing problem without creating a new problem with the new houses they’re supposed to put in there, then I’m not going to pass it,” said Horry County Councilman Johnny Vaught, who represents the area.

Davis is hoping all of the deciding powers take a second to step in his shoes before taking that vote.

“The possibility of it flooding, and you couldn’t get your loved ones out, let alone yourself,” said Davis. “We’re talking about children and senior citizens. Don’t they value something in this community?”

Davis says several neighbors intended to head to Horry County Council to fight the rezoning, however, Vaught says the big vote will be deferred because the engineer is out of town.

This means they’ll have to wait just a little bit longer to find out what the future holds for West Perry Road.

Copyright 2022 WMBF. All rights reserved.