Last summer, Pleasure Island brought carnival rides and amusements back to the beach. Now water slides could become a part of the fun at Carolina Beach.
The Carolina Beach Planning and Zoning Commission recommended the Town Council approve a conditional use permit for a water park a few blocks from the beach. But nearby property owners are worried that replacing the sounds of the ocean with screaming kids could hurt their property value and their health.
A developer wants to use a vacant half-acre lot at South Lake Park Blvd. and Hamlet Avenue for an inflatable water slide park two blocks from the beach. If Carolina Beach Town Council approves a conditional use permit, the water park will butt up against Richard Lehrer's property.
"I'm all for water parks," Lehrer said. "I've got an eight-year-old kid. I'm all for NASCAR. I just don't want to live next door to it."
The town's planning director Gary Ferguson says the water rides would be the perfect match for the amusements brought in last year.
"It's going to provide more opportunity for more tourists to come to the Town of Carolina Beach," Ferguson said.
Lehrer is worried the extra noise means he'll lose his tenant and cause health hazards for his family. But the Planning Board says the town will take the noise level into account before issuing the permit.
Town Council will review plans for the permit and make a decision at their meeting March 9. If it's approved the developer plans to have the rides open for the summer. Lehrer says if that happens he plans to file a lawsuit against the town.