More shopping options — Costco, Kohl’s, more expected at new center

in The Bluffton News by

ByAileen Goldstein

Local residents and visitors will soon have many more options for their shopping pleasure.

Horne Properties, based in Knoxville, Tenn., is developing a shopping center at the northwest corner of U.S. 278 and S.C. 170 (which is one-third in Beaufort County and two-thirds in Jasper County).

The center, known as Okatie Crossing, is expected to be home to a proposed Costco, among other large stores and small retail spaces.

Doug Horne, president of Horne Properties, said the company is working hard to develop the 180-acre site and the center will be open as soon as possible, although he would not give a time frame for the completion. The company’s website says the center will open later this year or in early 2017. The center is described as a lifestyle, shopping, dining and business destination.

Horne would also not confirm any stores that are proposed for the center, although Kohl’s, Target, Academy Sports and Lowe’s, along with Costco, are among the stores on the site plan on Horne Properties’ website.

Nikki Chellew, corporate communications coordinator for Costco, would not confirm that the store is coming to Okatie Crossing, citing company policy to not comment on future locations.

The shopping center will include already existing stores in the area, including Ethan Allen and more.

Beaufort Memorial Hospital owns 20 acres in the center of the new shopping center. According to the hospital’s website, the land will be used for expansion and Bluffton Medical Services will eventually move to that site.

“We are working with Jasper County and Hardeeville on a tax incentive program,” Horne said.

The developer is still securing prospective retailers and hopes the incentive program will help.

“We have the last big commercial track in Beaufort and Jasper counties,” he continued, which is attractive to potential retailers.

Top photo: Construction is on-going at Okatie Crossing at U.S. 278 and S.C. 170. Photo by Aileen Goldstein.