Harry Williams has been mayor of the City of Hardeeville since 2016. He is chairman of the Southern Low Country advisory board. He answers questions from Monthly about the new recreation center and Hardeeville’s future growth. The responses have been edited for length and clarity.
2. The new recreation center debuted this summer. Why do you think the center will benefit the Lowcountry region?
The new Center opened on July 31 and 1,000 people visited. People from throughout the city and the region came together and this is one of the core objectives — to join our diverse community in good fellowship.
3. Are there any aspects of Hardeeville that visitors may not be aware of that are worth exploring?
Hardeeville is still a work in progress. Over the next few years, we will develop the 1,330 Conservation Easement in the East Argent district as a passive recreation destination center. Along with the Rec Center and nearby Jasper County’s Sergeant Jasper Park, Hardeeville will one day have a diverse tourism portfolio. Also, in December 2021 Hardeeville will be home to the National Half Marathon Championship and we hope that will become a yearly event.
4. How do you envision Hardeeville’s future growth in five years? What are some of the city’s main goals?
Hardeeville will be a vastly different place in five years. Five million square feet of warehousing/light industry will be built and new commerce will dot the landscape. Our challenges will be to revitalize our main corridor known as Whyte Hardee Boulevard, plan this explosive growth responsibly, and protect our natural environment.
5. Do you have a personal favorite place in Hardeeville to relax or enjoy activities?
I live in Sun City, which is a great community to enjoy activities with people my age, including my mediocre golf game. But I enjoy the communal events with people of the South whose culture is different from my northern upbringing. I enjoy meeting our local business owners like the new Larry and Ella’s Kitchen and Rick Patel, one of our leading small business owners. It is a daily education of a different culture and I enjoy that most of all.