Posted on: February 28, 2018

Editorial: Margaritaville opening important for city, region

Now is our chance to see what all the fuss is about.

On Saturday morning the public is invited to the opening of the Latitude Margaritaville Hilton Head sales center in Hardeeville.

We’ve anticipated the launch of the 55-and-older community since plans were announced last May.

The community boasts of entertainment, resort-style pools and a 290,000-square-foot retail center that plans to include a Margaritaville-themed restaurant.

There’s great anticipation, especially since last fall hundreds camped out in anticipation of the opening of the Daytona Beach, Fla., location and within weeks more than 3,000 people had visited the site. Since last October more than 15,000 prospective buyers have visited the Florida sales center.

We don’t know how great the demand will be in Hardeeville, but we expect a strong turnout.

The day’s events will include tours, entertainment and interactive displays. The Jimmy Buffet-themed development has definitely inspired interest, with Minto Communications saying more than 100,000 people have registered to get information.

It’s fun to envision the music, shops and tennis courts, but we hope this project truly helps boost the city and the area. Latitude Margaritaville Hilton Head and the East Argent development expect to bring a combined 12,500 homes.

That’s a lot of people. The city expects the population in the next 10 years to grow from 5,721 residents to 28,204 in 2028.

Latitude Margaritaville Hilton Head and East Argent are only part of that expected influx (the Jasper Port and RiverPort developments also will contribute to growth) but those communities are a big component of the city — and the region’s — future.

Recently we attended a meeting of the Southern Lowcountry Regional Board, which includes officials from Hardeeville, Ridgeland, Bluffton, Hilton Head Island and Beaufort and Jasper counties.

The talk was focused on Hardeeville, but it was good to see the representatives discuss the city’s growth as a unit. Yes, city manager Mike Czymbor and Hardeeville Mayor Harry Williams gave a presentation about Hardeeville, but the board spoke about helping each other grow.

The board’s purpose is to communicate about the southern Lowcountry’s projects and we experienced what seemed to be a good sense of teamwork. Ideas about traffic, education and affordable housing were discussed. The board had a good rapport and the meeting was informative for all officials.

As Margaritaville and other projects begin to become reality, we expect an increased focus on Hardeeville.

We hope the good relationships remain as the county and the region evolves.

Jasper County Sun Times
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