HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — Since plans were announced in late August, residents have been concerned about what the rezoning of River Oaks Golf Club means for their community.
If approved, nearly 178 acres of the River Oaks Golf Club could be rezoned as a residential development that would add 505 homes to the area.
The request was supposed to be voted on at Sept. 1’s Horry County council meeting, but that vote was deferred until October. The developer of the project, Diamond Shores, LLC, said they wanted to hear the community’s concerns before they proceed.
Wednesday night, Diamond Shores, LLC hosted a meeting where community members could meet with them, ask questions, look at drawings and express their concerns.
The meeting was set up so that residents could speak with developers directly and also fill out information cards to document their concerns.
David Schwerd, chief operating officer of Diamond Shores, said they were able to get a lot of insight from the meeting, but no definitive answers can be made just yet.
“It’s too soon to say what the actual design changes will be because they’ve all taken time out and left us a variety of information with their cards,” Schwerd said. “Once we go through all those cards, we’ll be able to make that determination.”
Some of the things residents have shared with News13 include concern about stormwater, traffic, loss of green spaces and less golf course views.
“Why are we knocking down all the trees?” River Oaks resident Donna DiDonato, said. “They’re taking up beautiful landscapes and golf courses.”
“What they’re doing is they’re going to be taking away the gem of Carolina Forest, and that is the River Oaks golf course,” River Oaks resident Melissa Joos said. “If they put one shovel in the ground, that is going to affect us, each and every one of us.”
Even after the meeting, some residents still felt unsatisfied with the trajectory of the rezoning project.
“I don’t think that anything they can tell me will make me feel better about what I’ve seen on those drawings and the number of houses on those lots,” Joos said.
Schwerd said he understands why residents are upset, but he hopes the meeting provided some clarity.
“They’re still not happy about losing a golf course, but as tonight’s meeting was more about, if you are going to have to lose a golf course or redevelopment, what will it look like? And what are the things that we can ask for?”