Horry County school leaders to ask Myrtle Beach city leaders to fund renovations

CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – The Horry County Facilities Committee met Monday night to talk about plans for current construction projects in the district and possible plans for the future.

One project on that list was renovations to the Myrtle Beach stadium, home of the Myrtle Beach High School Seahawks.

In the meeting, district leaders brought up the fact that, under a contract, the city and school district share ownership of the stadium.

Committee leaders say there have been plans discussed to bring stadium-style seating and new restrooms to the Myrtle Beach stadium, but they want the city to pay for the renovations.

Right now, the school board says it has more than 200 million dollars of needs in the district, and that needs in the classrooms take priority.

School Board Chair, Joe Defeo, says he plans to speak with city leaders about the possibility of giving the school’s half of the stadium back to the city and have the school district lease the stadium.

Defeo says this would help with the costs and avoid any confusion moving forward.

“Too early to say it that’s a good idea or bad idea, just a matter of getting information. I have not asked anybody at the city. Although, I’ve had some discussion with council members if that’d be something that they might be interested in looking at,” said Defeo.

News 13 reached out to Myrtle Beach City Spokesperson Mark Kruea, and he says if the board does make the request, then the city council would have to decide whether or not it would want full ownership and to fund the renovations.

“The city built and owned the high school stadium (Doug Shaw Memorial) until not quite 10 years ago when we upgraded the field and installed the all weather track, among other things, splitting the cost — and subsequently the ownership — with the school district.  The concrete grandstand, which is home to the MBHS Seawhawks, is now roughly 50 years old and due for replacement,” said Kruea.

Kruea says replacing the stands alone would cost $6 million, which right now would mean the city and the district would split the cost.

“Under the joint ownership agreement from a decade ago, the school district’s obligation is to bring the stadium up to “district standards,” estimated at about $2 million.  Under that scenario, the city’s portion of replacing the stands, etc., would be $4 million as part of the split ownership arrangement,” said Kruea.

Board members say right now, that is not in the budget.

Count on News 13 to keep you updated with the latest.

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