‘It’s all about communication,’ chairman says of Memorial Day Weekend traffic loop

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – The Coastal Alliance met Wednesday morning and the items on the agenda were Beach Renourishment, The Memorial Day Weekend Traffic Loop and Ride Three projects.

Members wanted to know the status of Beach Renourishment efforts. The Army Corps of Engineers recently completed damage assessments of our area following October’s Historic Floods. North Myrtle Beach and Garden City Beach met the damage threshold to receive emergency repairs. At this point the report heads up to Washington D.C. to determine how much money those areas will receive. It should take four to six weeks before city leaders know how much money will be awarded.

Garden City has already been approved for $16 million in federal funds for a dredging project that will begin this fall.

County leaders now work to get other beaches in our area on that federal list to receive funding for renourishment efforts.

“So now we’re looking at the Corps of Engineers. They’ve got about $40 million allocated for emergency funds. So we’re trying to get the Cherry Grove reach allocated so we can do some shore up in that area. We’re on target to do complete beach renourishment for the entire Grand Strand in 2018 so what we’re trying to do is push that to 2017,” Chairman Mark Lazarus said.

Chairman Lazarus says they will continue to work with Congressman Tom Rice and Senator Lindsey Graham to work on ways to move forwards.

The Alliance members also discussed the Memorial Day Weekend Traffic Loop. Lieutenant Joey Crosby presented an updated map that’s easier for people to read. It features landmarks in the area to help people know exactly where they are.

This year the Myrtle Beach Police Department will launch a map services site. It will feature an interactive map of the loop that’s labeled with the route, location of barricades and current roads closed. There’s also a function to enter your location and navigate a route that will keep you out of the loop.

“I think what the city came up with using this app to help people. It’s all about communication. Success is based on communication and how well you communicate. I think the better we communicate to the citizens the easier it is for them to get around, the happier they will be and the more they will enjoy themselves while here,” Lazarus added.

The map services site will debut this weekend for the Myrtle Beach marathon.

The last item on the agenda was the status for the Ride Three projects. The Horry County RIDE 3 Sales Tax Commission voted on a preliminary list of road projects for Horry County Council to consider placing on the November 2016 General Election ballot. If passed by the voters, a one percent sales tax would go into effect countywide for eight years beginning on May 1, 2017. The estimated revenue during the sales tax implementation is $590 million, to be used for road improvements.

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