Edisto’s industrial park saluted

by | August 3, 2018 5:00 am

Last Updated: August 3, 2018 at 1:02 am

CELEBRATING A WIN. Edisto Beach town officials were recognized for their work on the town’s beach renourishment project during a recent meeting of the South Carolina Municipal Association. Shown are, left to right, Councilman Jerome Kizer, Councilwoman Patti Smyer, Councilwoman Susan Hornsby, Mayor Jane Darby, Town Administrator Iris Hill and Councilman Crawford Moore

Edisto Beach’s efforts to repave its industrial park were recognized during the annual meeting of the Municipal Association of South Carolina’s annual meeting July 21.

Talk to town officials for any period of time about municipal issues and eventually you are going to learn about the industrial park.

Officials, taking the lead of the late Edisto Beach Mayor Burley Lyons, explain that tourism is the town’s main industry and its 4.4 miles of beachfront is its industrial park.

That means the well-being of the town, as well as the preservation of this unique natural asset, depend on protecting the coastline from the waves, tides, storm surges and other forces that cause sand to build up or to erode.

Those shifting sands are the pavement for Edisto Beach’s industrial park.

The recent beach renourishment project undertaken by the town was saluted with a Municipal Achievement Award by the state association.

Edisto Beach officials were on had to accept the award for the population category for communities with a population under 1,000.

In 2017, the town restored approximately 835,000 cubic yards of sand to the eroded beach and lengthened 26 groins. The technically complex, multi-million dollar project received funds from local tourism taxes and fees; Colleton County’s Capital Projects Sales Tax; and grants from the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Of the $18-million project cost, the town contributed 16 percent. Four other entities shared the project costs.

Officials organized a Beachfront Management Committee to provide input to the coastal engineer throughout the design and permitting process.

Permitting was already a complex piece of the process; in part, because it called for efforts to protect nesting turtles and other monitoring activities.

When hurricanes Joaquin and Matthew hit, the permitting had to be modified.

By teaming up with Edisto Beach State Park, the town shared the cost of mobilization and demobilization — the largest financial component of the nourishment projects.

“Town leaders were successful in selling the benefits of the project to the other partners in order to acquire the necessary funding,” said Wayne George, executive director for the Municipal Association.

The winning entries represent innovative projects undertaken by Municipal Association member cities and towns.

The Municipal Association of South Carolina initiated the Achievement Awards in 1987 to recognize and encourage innovations and excellence in local government.


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