Letters to the Editor

Much to like in our community, except U.S. 501

Thank you Sun News for the statements and support about all that is good with Myrtle Beach. Your editorial a few weeks ago, “In Defense of Myrtle Beach,” was spot on in all categories. You even included a few things statewide. Now we can add a golf major to be proud of in South Carolina. The Charleston area did a top notch job in hosting our first national major golf tournament in South Carolina. Over 30,000 a day at the 94th PGA golf tournament. We did so well, we deserve a revisit of a golf major, maybe here in Myrtle Beach at the Dunes?

As for those negative comments you listed that were not so kind to Myrtle Beach, come on, it is easy to sit in the back seat and drive. Also, it would be easy for us to sit back and take cheap shots at other communities in any direction around us. The fact that you then took the high road and pointed out so many of the positives of our little beach community is appreciated.

Is the grass greener on the other side of the hill? Always, but having lived here for six years, having lived in and experienced many other beach communities in my life, I am one that says Myrtle Beach gets it right, and when it does not I see motion to make it better.

However, the one thing I must take you to task on is something that was not mentioned in your article that none can ignore. It is the first thing the majority of visitors see and something many of us tolerate twice a day. U.S. 501 is a blight that must have most visitors, at first glance, thinking they are lost in time. Maybe good enough decades ago, it is now is a very dangerous and unsafe roadway we all must travel too often.

This summer I traveled through such cities as Chicago, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, etc. I traveled through nine states and put on close to 3,000 miles. The fact I must admit, after this summer excursion was, hands down, I had more close calls on U.S. 501 than any interstate through a major city or on any gravel back road to find that hidden fishing hole.

I implore all of our county boards, our local, state and federal legislators to get us off this road, sooner rather than later. We are dying for the powers that be to take corrective action. Whether to fund and build I-73, extend S.C. 22 out to I-95 or start building additional infrastructure around 501, we need change now!

Sorry to those with a business on U.S. 501. You have had 25 or more years with your time in the sun. The many do not need to drive an unsafe road for the convenience of a few. Progress is a fact of life. Lastly, U.S. 501 is the first impression we extend to the majority of our visitors and it is the last impression we leave them with. Come on, city, state and federal decision-makers, we are all doing much to improve and enhance the experience of being in Myrtle Beach, both residents and visitors. Please, build a road around us we can be proud of, not one that keeps visitors thinking that Fred and Wilma might be in the next car they pass.

The writer lives in Longs.