Carolina Forest prepared for new business

Horry County Council is looking to lure a large business, code named "Project Orbit" to the area, creating more than 600 jobs.

The proposed location of the facility has not been announced, but many are suggesting it could be on Hinson Drive in Carolina Forest. The area is no stranger to construction, with a Lowes supermarket and convenience store currently going up.

The massive growth in Carolina Forest has come with some growing pains, mostly in the form of traffic, which could get worse with 600 people commuting to the area.

Horry County Spokesperson Lisa Bourcier says even with the problems, Carolina Forest was designed to host big businesses near Highway 501 and Towne Center.

"The infrastructure is already in place, there's multi-lane facility on International Drive, up to River Oaks... lots of great ingress, egress, for that facility," Bourcier said.

There are also some plans to ease traffic problems in the area, including extending International Drive all the way to Highway 90. "We do have plans for Carolina Forest to add three turn lanes in the spring on some of the busy areas, as well as doing re-surfacing work in the summer once school is out," Bourcier added.

The International Drive extension is one of the many projects funded by the penny sales tax, but Bourcier said finding for a permanent solution is harder to come by.

"We do know that Carolina Forest completely needs to be four lanes as well as River Oaks Drive, but it does come down to money and financing. We have been able to widen portions of River Oaks and Carolina Forest over the last couple years and that still will be on our long term plans."