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Carteret County Tourism In NC: Visitor Travel Is Set To Explode In Growth

Carteret County tourism in NC, discussions on current efforts to make this Crystal Coast community more attractive to vacationers, investors, and residents. We also encourage discussions on future visitor travel growth and development as this community is expected to exponentially explode with a new population of industry, technology, new business startups, developers, and national brands possibly moving in to the area given the completion of Interstate 42.

All news and announcements related to tourism in Carteret County NC will be updated within this document.

Please use the comment system at the end of this article for discussions, and consider sharing this article with friends on social media like Facebook and Twitter so they can engage with us.

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Our local community has always been a mecca for visitor travel from all over the world given our small town and quaint old town feel. Our unspoiled and uncrowded beaches, lack of big brand commercialization, and unmatched scenic beauty from Cape Lookout to Emerald Isle is seemingly in demand for families who enjoy walking our white sand beaches looking for the latest rare find seashell, exploring our sprawling sand dunes, and enjoying the ability to get lost in it all.

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But all of that could be about to change.

Given the completion of the new Interstate 42 project from Raleigh NC to Cedar Island sometime in the next ten years, all projections and historical information outlines what is expected to be explosive new population growth, new industry and technology, new developers and investors looking at the area, new commercial and residential construction, and overall expansion of infrastructure.

Just this week, the NCDOT announced that construction is underway for a new bypass around Havelock NC. A bypass is already completed in Goldsboro and Smithfield, with Kinston and New Bern soon to come. The new Gallants Channel bridge is already built in Beaufort, and road expansion is being completed in down east communities.

Once all of this is in place, Carteret County tourism is going to be met with new challenges. That primary challenge is going to be how to expand or build new infrastructure, upgrade roads, medical centers, schools, bridges, build new business and residential housing while still protecting our incredibly fragile ecosystem and quaint feel. This is the kind of discussions we want on this page.

How do we encourage and welcome new visitor travel and build new infrastructure to the county and still protect our nourished beaches and barrier islands that we all love so much?

Where do you likely see new residential housing and investment being built in the county? Where do you see new commercial infrastructure being built?

What is the future of local families and their small business efforts once big national brands move in to the area?

How will the Croatan National Forest be protected?

What are your concerns, constructive ideas, or insights on tourism explosion in Carteret County?

These are discussions that everyone in the Carteret County community is going to have to address shortly. Whether you are a developer, investor, business owner, conservationist, or simply a resident who has insight to this new tourism chapter, we want to hear from you below.

We believe most everyone in the county realizes that the local economy needs a boost, that we need new jobs and investment in existing infrastructure, but we also all have to come together and find a way to do this while maintaining historical structures, clean beaches and water, while protecting things like sea turtles, Cape Lookout, wetlands, and the wild horses on Shackleford Banks.

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Michael Sharp

Native of Carteret County NC, Father to Makayla and Savannah. You can add me on Facebook. Interest include web development, encryption, and other technologies.

2 thoughts on “Carteret County Tourism In NC: Visitor Travel Is Set To Explode In Growth

  • May 20, 2021 at 12:57 pm

    I sure hope after 2020, that the 2021 tourism season will be one of the biggest on record in addition to those looking at visiting the county to inquire about new businesses and home ownership with the new interstate.

    I’ve been very worried about our area being a popular destination for travelers since the pandemic started and am glad to see good signs of an improving economy.

  • August 7, 2019 at 8:51 pm

    Business leaders, local mayors, Representatives and Senators, developers are going to only get one chance to get this interesting intersection between healthy economic growth and protections for the area feel and history. In 20 years, we don’t get a do over. They are going to have to get it right the first time.

    I probably represent the majority. I grew up here and love the area. I love the beaches you spoke of, dark nights on the beach where you can see the stars and moon, the foliage in the endless sand dunes, miles of beaches you can walk alone, Beaufort’s old town feel and atmosphere. But I also need for people to have good paying high wages and plentiful work to sustain their families.

    Let’s hope county officials can figure it all out and tourism can remain a positive word here.


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