MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW)- Businesses continue to grow on the Grand Strand as more people move to our area. The Market Common area is one area that continues to expand and is a desirable place for living and for most business owners. But the owner of Kalbacher and Lee, a family owned boutique, told News13 that business in the area hasn’t been desirable lately.
Peter Kalbacher and his wife Kyung Lee own a small business in what most people would call Market Common.
“The small businesses are the engine for the United States,” said Kalbacher.
But their business is not in the Market Common district. It’s actually called the Soho district, short for south of Howard Avenue.
Many businesses owners on the south end say they don’t receive the same support the other businesses do just across the street.
“Somewhat I feel that we are totally separated. It’s two different entities and the same way, so is local support, it’s not knowing. It’s not that they don’t want to support, it’s the awareness,” said Lee.
Kyung Lee says they don’t have signage on their end, or a directory. Her husband says that’s been a big problem for sales.
“What we find is most of our customers say oh we didn’t know you had shops down there.”
Signage is just one of their issues, and their biggest concern is how many businesses in the Soho district continue to fail.
“What you see is a whole neighborhood of shops that are basically vacant. That’s not good for the property value, that’s not good for the homeowners, that’s not good for South Carolina!”
They also feel there are smaller issues the city could help with.
“We would like to see a little better parking structure, so there’s a loading dock maybe just part time, some better handicapped parking, perhaps some cross-paths so that people who are parking on the other side, can get across without having to be stuck in the mud.”
Kalbacher wants his small business to help fuel the Myrtle Beach economy but he said it can’t without some help.
“We would like them to come down here and see us, talk to us, we don’t bite, we want the opportunity to say hey we are here, support us, we support you!”
Kalbacher and Lee have formed an alliance with several of the other stores in the Soho district and plan on going to city council on Tuesday to ask for some changes to be made. Count on News13 to keep you covered with what happens at that meeting.