GEORGETOWN, SC (WMBF) - Revitalizing Georgetown is the goal of a new plan released by the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism.
The study offers suggestions of how the Waccamaw and Grand Strand areas can meet their tourism potential.
Georgetown is a city that's fallen on some tough times with the closure of its steel mill back in 2009, in addition to the layoff of hundreds of workers. The study suggests that if the steel mill closes, the prime property should be redeveloped into retail shops and restaurants to help draw tourists into the area.
Katie Maleckar owns Prince George Framing along Front Street in Georgetown, and says she'd welcome new shops and businesses there.
"I think that would be awesome. I think that's what we need. That's a beautiful section down there, in the bend of the river. It'd just be an asset to us, instead of a rusting hulk," said Maleckar.
City of Georgetown Councilwoman Jeanette Ard says she hopes that the mill will open back up to provide a steady source of income to the area.
"I'm all for tourism, but I want some real jobs here. Stable jobs that are year-round jobs that people can move here, live here, work here, and shop here," explained Ard.
The new tourism study also suggests that the Georgetown area should add more hotels and entertainment because people are looking for more than just the beach. They're looking for historic places to visit like Georgetown.
"A lot of the people that we get here during the main part of the tourist season are people that are in Myrtle Beach for that part of it, but then they come down here for the history. Georgetown's a pretty town," said Maleckar.
Another suggestion from the study would be to add cruise ships to bring in more people.