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Downtown Historic District

Established October 2019

The Myrtle Beach Downtown Historic District is a collection of twenty-four commercial buildings centrally located in Myrtle Beach’s original commercial core which is now the Arts & Innovation District.  The buildings within the district are diverse in their architectural styles and range from the late-1920s to the late-1960s, reflecting the changing styles of a growing city.  Some of the early styles include Mission Revival, Art Deco, and Depression Modern commercial buildings, while mid-century changes and additions reflect more eye-catching designs.  The attempt to modernize old buildings and make them appear new in the 1950s and 1960s led to updated, Modern-style facades.  However, not all of these modernizing techniques provided architecturally rich examples of updated facades as these typically featured stucco application or the removal of identifying elements.  Additionally, the 1980s saw a second wave of modernizing out-of-date buildings and covered buildings in stucco and added faux balustrades and balconettes.   Several such buildings have already begun transformations back to historically significant facades, and some are being discussed in planning phase.

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9th Avenue North Adaptive Reuse - Blending Past | Present | & Future

All Six City-owned buildings along 9th Avenue North underwent significant repair/renovation and three of these include historic preservation.  The City is effectively realizing tax credit benefits on the three historic buildings, each of which now have tenants.  A partnership with HTC and the non-profit group eMYRge takes the place of the old A&P Supermarket historic property as a micro-office & co-working facility named the HTC Aspire HUB.  HTC is providing $250,000 for technology and unfitting of the co-work space. Only one of the six investment properties is available as of December 2023.  Other tenants include a fitness and rehab gym, ice cream eatery, wine and small plate venue, and a bakery.  This investment has sparked reinvestment in the private sector on this block including a artisan candle shop and South American cuisine restaurant and bar.

Historic Main Street Theater Project

The Myrtle Beach Downtown Redevelopment Corporation (DRC) owns the three contiguous buildings on Main Street currently planned to be home to a new performing arts and multipurpose theater.  Presently referred to as the "Theater Project", these three unique buildings will retain their individual historic facades while the interior is renovated into a 300-seat theater.  Theater-goers will be able to experience the three buildings as one cohesive space that include three lobbies (one area for each historic building), snack bar area, VIP area,  and a 2nd floor outdoor patio.  Our community is very excited for this project and the City believes our efforts to invest in this project now will pay off for generations.


Tax Credits and Historic Preservation Incentives

Historic Tax Credits

The National Tax Credit Program was implemented by the federal government in 1976 to help the private sector preserve historic buildings by providing a 20% federal tax credit for the rehabilitation of these historic buildings. Likewise, the State of South Carolina has enacted its own tax credit act, which provides an additional state historic tax credit of up to 25% of the qualified rehabilitation expenses for a current or future historic income-producing property. This program is administered by the South Carolina Department of Archives and History (SHPO) and the Department of Interior/National Park Services (NPS).  To qualify for these historic tax credits a property must individually be listed on the National Register of Historic Places and/or be a contributing structure in a National Register Historic District.

Bailey Bill (S.C. Code Ann. sections 4-9-195 and 5-21-140)

Enacted in 1992, the Bailey Bill allows local governments to offer a property tax abatement to encourage the rehabilitation of historic properties. For a period of no more than 20 years, the local government can lock in a special property tax assessment based on the property’s fair market value prior to rehabilitation.


It's purpose is to encourage the restoration of historic properties, promote community development and redevelopment, encourage sound community panning, and promote the general health, safety and welfare of the community.  The City of Myrtle Beach Ordinance No. 2018-25 states the tax assessment will be "equal to the appraised value of the property at the time of preliminary certification" and "may remain in effect for a period not to exceed ten years."  Preliminary certification requirements include having the property receive historic designation status, receive approval from the Reviewing Authority, and the project must commence on or after the date of the adoption of tax assessment ordinance No. 2018-25.  The special tax assessment may apply to structure(s) rehabilitated and/or real property on which the building is located.

To be eligible for the tax assessment, historic rehabilitation must be appropriate for the historic building and the historic district in which it is located.  This is achieved through adherence to standards for rehabilitation work, i.e. work shall not be done that compromises the historical essence of the building.


Bailey Bill Application and Guidelines

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