Metal barricades line U.S. 17 in North Myrtle Beach between 27th Avenue South and 28th Avenue South as the city gears up for Atlantic Beach Bikefest later this month. More barricades are being trucked into Myrtle Beach as they prepare for Memorial Day.
In North Myrtle Beach, barricades are an uncommon sight so early in the month.
"They were dropped off early," Pat Dowling, public information officer, said. "Public safety is aware of it, they didn't ask for them to be dropped off early, but there they are."
Dowling said the barricades are not set up, but they are staged in the area.
The barricades, which line Dodge's Chicken and a shopping center housing Waves, Nick's Cigar World and Rent-A-Center, encourage motorists to continue moving and to stop drivers from cutting through the parking lots, and potentially putting pedestrians in danger, Dowling said.
"They really help to control people from coming in and out of private driveways or the stores up there so they don't hit people when they're trying to get out," Dowling said. "In other words, you go in one way and go out one way and you can't take little shortcuts through different properties."
The barricades will eventually assist with the chute, a dedicated lane blocked off with orange barricades, allowing bikers to line up along U.S. 17 before they turn into Atlantic Beach during Bikefest.
The goal of the chute, which runs between 33rd Avenue South and 27th Avenue South, is to keep traffic from backing up along Restaurant Row.
"The chute is necessary," Nick Goebel, owner of Nick's Cigar World, said. "Does it help my business? No. Does it help traffic? Yes. That's just the way you gotta look at it. It's just something we've got to put up with."
In the City of Myrtle Beach a 23-mile traffic loop will be set up, officials said. Barricades are being staged around the city, Capt. Joey Crosby, Myrtle Beach Police Department public information officer, said.
While the barricades are visible, they will not go into effect until May 24, Crosby said.
"This is an ongoing process from now until the start of the event," Crosby said.
Over Memorial Day weekend, North Myrtle Beach expects more than 100,000 people to be in town, according to documents provided by Dowling.
Last year, officials responded to 39 traffic accidents over Memorial Day weekend and 30 traffic accidents during Harley Week, documents show.
The barricades, however, are something Goebel would like to see go away. According to Goebel, the barricades stop people coming to his store.
"I think it's an eyesore," Goebel said. "It kind of gives it a look that, what's going on in this town? Is it under construction or is there some kind of siege going on?"
For businesses near Barefoot Landing, both Harley Week and the Atlantic Beach Bikefest are welcome events.
"We've had no issues at all," Gordon Harris, owner of Eggs Up Grill, said. "We serve some of the best people in the world that comes through this door for both events, the Harley Week and the Memorial Day weekend. So we really look forward to it."
Harris said his business is not affected by the chute, or the traffic loop.
According to Dowling, the barricades are just one of the precautions the city takes for Atlantic Beach Bikefest.
"Our whole public safety plan is to keep traffic moving," Dowling said. "The more you keep it moving, the less problems you're going to have with people getting frustrated."