Work on the Shops at Barefoot Village is finally expected to begin after some back and forth between the developer and North Myrtle Beach City Council.
After a council meeting Monday night, members unanimously voted to allow work to begin on the first phase of the project that will bring in a 10,000-square-foot commercial building that is slated to hold a nail salon, restaurant, cafe and a liquor store. The goal is to have “things that people need, so they don’t have to go across the bridge to North Myrtle Beach for,” developer Dargan Grigg said.
Tenants have not yet been decided on.
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“It’s kind of going to be user driven,” Grigg said. “When we get this going and zoning approved, we’re going to start putting out marketing for pre-leasing.”
Construction is expected to begin in the spring, and Grigg hopes to have shop space open by the fall. The entire project will total six new buildings, with one building set to be built each year. The master plan shows a ‘Main Street’ type feel, with buildings on each side of the road that is separated by a planted median.
In total, the project will be over 388,000-square-feet. It is not clear at this time what businesses will be housed in the six other buildings.
The most controversial part of the construction includes a possible gas station, which was slated for in the original planned unit development, Grigg said.
“We showed one on this corner lot, which would be phase five in the overall master plan,” Grigg said. “Basically, we could have a gas station down the road, we might not. If we did, it’s going to be much smaller than what you would see on Highway 17. Not a lot of pumps, a neighborhood convenience store that does offer gas.”
Grigg said that residents have expressed concerns about big trucks crossing the bridge, but reiterated that bigger trucks already come through the area to refill the fuel tankers at the marina stating, “It’s something that’s happened all the time since this started. These roads were designed for that. It shouldn’t be any issue.”
In 2012, city council denied building permits to property owner Roger Grigg, of Leonard, Grigg & Associates, LLC that would begin development on the third phase, bringing residential developments to the area. Council stated that they would not grant the permits until work began on the commercial properties.
The first residents moved into Barefoot Resort in March 2000. North Myrtle Beach spokesman Pat Dowling said since then residents have had to cross the swing bridge to Barefoot Landing or points beyond to do their shopping.
“If I lived there it would be nice to know that I could ride my golf cart down to Starbucks or, eventually, to a convenience store,” he said.
The development will take place behind the marina and the North Tower.
The construction comes amid big changes on the other side of the waterway at Barefoot Landing. In March, Burroughs & Chapin announced that a new restaurant district was coming to the area, anchored with Lulu’s by Lucy Buffett.
The restaurant will be apart of the newly constructed Dockside Village, featuring live music nightly, a sandy beach, a ropes climbing course and an arcade.