BEAUFORT, N.C. (WNCT) – Some concerns are being raised about potential development at Gibbs Creek in Beaufort.
Gibbs Creek is one of the last in Beaufort that’s not been closed to shellfishing. One group tells 9OYS they want to try their best to protect it and all the good it does for the area.
“People should understand the value of this landscape right here,” said Beaufort resident Jud Kenworthy.
Kenworthy has lived along Gibbs Creek for 23 years. He said when tidal creeks get developed, the water quality declines.
“This particular tidal creek is, you know, it’s rated at the highest rating you possibly can have for the quality of the water. The wetlands are extensive. It’s a fishery nursery, a habitat for fish and wildlife,” said Kenworthy.
Coastal Carolina Riverwatch has been advocating on behalf of concerned residents like Kenworthy since the fall of 2021. They say through their efforts, the density of the project has been lowered.
“It originally came out as a 400-unit proposal, including a hotel, a park, and some commercial area in addition to the residential areas. Now through community advocacy, we have kind of lowered the density of the proposal, it’s now sitting at about 80 units,” said White Oak Waterkeeper with Coastal Carolina Riverwatch, Rebecca Drohan.
In a written statement to 9OYS, the town said:
“The applicant’s next step is to submit a Sewer Allocation Request to the Board of Commissioners. The town provides a public comment time at each of the meetings for citizens to express their comments. The Town boards have a legal obligation to review each submitted application for compliance with the existing town ordinances. The boards must make their decisions based upon compliance with the ordinances.”Rachel Johnson, Public Information Officer for the Town of Beaufort