North Myrtle Beach to consider banning tents on the beach in some areas

North Myrtle Beach city council members held a workshop Monday, where they heard a presentation on the need to restrict the use of tents on the beach in three locations.

A proposed ordinance is being drafted and will be considered by members at their December 16 meeting.

If the ordinance passes two readings, the use of tents on the beach would be prohibited in these locations, according to city spokesman Pat Dowling:

· In the Windy Hill section of the city from 45th Avenue South to 48th Avenue South, extended to the City limit (south side of North Beach Plantation)

Reason: A high population of beach-goers and minimal beach area

· In the Crescent Beach section of the city from 16th Avenue South to 18th Avenue South

Reason: Extremely high population of beach-goers in a small area

· In the Cherry Grove section of the city from 21st Avenue North to 39th Avenue North.

Reason: Extreme beach erosion, no beach at high tide

Beach erosion is another reason the prohibition is being considered, Dowling said.

"After a staff review of the USACE contract from 2007 and the subsequent final report from 2010, it is estimated that an average high tide beach width of 150 feet existed at completion of the nourishment project. Since then, beach erosion rates vary by location within the city and range from 6 feet to 40 feet annually."

Two of the areas recommended for the tent restrictions show the narrowest beach sections in the city due to high erosion rates:

· In the Cherry Grove section (highest erosion rate)- a near zero foot beach width at the Cherry Grove Pier, to less than a 20 foot beach width near Sea Mountain Highway.

· In the Windy Hill section (high erosion rate) - 34 foot beach width beginning at 47th Avenue South and tapering to about 0 feet in front of the North Beach Plantation high rise.