‘We are very excited’: Grand Strand Humane Society shares new details about possible new home

Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 11:04 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 15, 2023 at 11:20 PM EST
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - One day after Horry County leaders voted to approve a resolution to allow Grand Strand Humane Society to proceed with an option to build a new facility on land currently owned by energy company Santee Cooper, details were revealed on a possible timeline of the project.

“We are very excited to have another promising option for a home for our new shelter,” said Jess Wnuk, executive director of GSHS.

On Tuesday morning, the Myrtle Beach City Council unanimously passed a resolution supporting Santee Cooper’s plan to provide land to GSHS.


The animal shelter has been ‘homeless’ since 2021 when a pest infestation forced the closure of their original building. Currently, dogs are being housed in a temporary location on Mr. Joe White Avenue, while cats are being housed in a retail space at the Tanger Outlets on Highway 501.

“It has been a difficult six months as we’ve looked at, what feels like a million pieces of property,” said Wnuk.

Last summer, a plan to build a new state-of-the-art facility along River Oaks was scrapped, after some residents expressed their opposition to the project.

Santee Cooper has stepped up with the opportunity for the use of 5-7 acres of land near the Myrtle Beach International Airport, currently going unused.

“It’s wonderful to know that we have a really promising option,” said Wnuk.

Through Myrtle Beach’s Capital Improvement Plan, the city has agreed to contribute $500,000 toward the renovation or construction of the new facility. The city also contributes $250,000 a year to Grand Strand Humane Society to house and care for the animals.

GSHS hopes to formally acquire the land in February 2024, with a groundbreaking ceremony in early 2025. Completion of the project would take 12 months, according to projections.

The longer timeline is due to the permitting process, which must be completed the correct way, and can take anywhere between 10-12 months to happen.

Stay with WMBF for updates.