An­other Grand Strand golf course des­tined for re­de­vel­op­ment?

The Sun News - - Front Page - BY ALAN BLONDIN [email protected]­sun­

Pos­sum Trot Golf Club in the North Myr­tle Beach area may be among the next Grand Strand cour­ses to close for re­de­vel­op­ment.

The Glens Group has op­er­ated Pos­sum Trot through a long-term lease that ex­pires on Sept. 30 and is not be­ing re­newed or ex­tended by the course’s own­ers, ac­cord­ing to Glens Group gen­eral man­ager Ge­orge Gore.

Glens Group also man­ages Glen Dornoch Golf Links through a lease and has sev­eral years re­main­ing on a lease of the for­mer Heather Glen Golf Links, which closed in Novem­ber 2017 af­ter be­ing sold to na­tional home­builder D.R. Hor­ton.

Pos­sum Trot’s land is zoned SF6, which al­lows for sin­gle-fam­ily homes with min­i­mum lot sizes of 6,000 square feet — the equiv­a­lent of about seven homes per acre. A re­zon­ing re­quest has not been sub­mit­ted to Horry County, ac­cord­ing to Horry County Plan­ning and Zon­ing Depart­ment in­terim direc­tor David Sch­w­erd.

The nearly 170-acre prop­erty is owned by a trust


in­volv­ing dozens of mem­bers of the Bell, Edge and Gore fam­i­lies. A rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the own­ers could not be reached for com­ment.

Pos­sum Trot head pro Bill Hulett and Steve White, a res­i­dent of North Myr­tle Beach Golf & Ten­nis Re­sort, which abuts Pos­sum Trot, said land sur­vey­ors have re­cently been on the prop­erty.

White’s con­do­minium com­plex, which has ap­prox­i­mately 185 units, is one of two that bor­ders Pos­sum Trot, along with Golf Glenn Vil­las.

A re­cent in­quiry into pos­si­ble an­nex­a­tion into North Myr­tle Beach on be­half of Pos­sum Trot’s own­ers may in­di­cate in­ter­est in re­de­vel­op­ment.

City of North Myr­tle Beach Direc­tor of Plan­ning and Devel­op­ment James Wood said rep­re­sen­ta­tives of both Pos­sum Trot and nearby Aza­lea Sands Golf Club have ini­ti­ated ex­ploratory dis­cus­sions about pos­si­ble an­nex­a­tion with city of­fi­cials in the past 15 months or so.

Pos­sum Trot’s in­quiry was within the past three or four months, Wood said. “We’ve had in­quiries from each of them, but no for­mal ap­pli­ca­tions,” Wood said.

Pos­sum Trot is es­sen­tially in a dough­nut hole in un­in­cor­po­rated Horry County, sur­rounded by North Myr­tle Beach prop­erty.

Any po­ten­tial de­vel­oper of Pos­sum Trot, or Aza­lea Sands or Beach­wood Golf Club that are in sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tions, may covet an­nex­a­tion into North Myr­tle Beach city lim­its so they would have ac­cess to city wa­ter and sewer ser­vice.

That’s be­cause the Pos­sum Trot prop­erty is in the city’s wa­ter and sewer ser­vice area and not in the Grand Strand Wa­ter and Sewer Author­ity’s ser­vice area, ac­cord­ing to North Myr­tle Beach city spokesman Pat Dowl­ing.

An­nex­a­tion of any prop­erty would re­quire ap­proval by the North Myr­tle Beach City Coun­cil.

Club fit­ter and club re­pair­man Al Cloyd is based at Pos­sum Trot, but plans to move his op­er­a­tion to the Beach­wood driv­ing range, where a build­ing will be con­structed for his use. Cloyd said Beach­wood plans to ac­ti­vate lights on the driv­ing range, which will soon be­gin re­main­ing open into the evening.

Pos­sum Trot has been part of the Grand Strand golf mar­ket for half a cen­tury. The 6,966-yard, par-72 Rus­sell Bree­den de­sign has been con­sis­tently pop­u­lar since it opened in 1968 as a course on the mid- to low-end of green fees in the mar­ket.

In ad­di­tion to Heather Glen’s sale and clos­ing in fa­vor of a planned hous­ing devel­op­ment, re­de­vel­op­ment pro­pos­als have re­cently been sub­mit­ted to the Horry County Plan­ning and Zon­ing depart­ment for In­dian Wells Golf Club in Gar­den City and nine holes of the 27-hole River Oaks Golf Plan­ta­tion in Myr­tle Beach.

More golf course clo­sures for re­de­vel­op­ment are likely on the Strand with home­builders look­ing for large tracts of land in a bur­geon­ing hous­ing mar­ket.

The Sun News file photo

Pos­sum Trot Golf Club’s sig­na­ture hole is the 203-yard 13th, which fea­tures a bulk-headed wa­ter hazard fronting the putting sur­face that gets longer the farther left you go nearly to the back of the green. Pos­sum Trot is es­sen­tially in a dough­nut hole cov­er­ing nearly 170 acres in un­in­cor­po­rated Horry County, sur­rounded by North Myr­tle Beach prop­erty.

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