Downtown Project’s Site Plan Extended

OCEAN CITY – Cropper’s Landing’s contract was extended an additional two years at this weeks Planning and Zoning Commission meeting.

The commission initially approved the site plan for Cropper’s Landing with a 6-0 vote in September of 2007. In October of 2009, the Cropper family asked the commission for an initial extension, which would have expired Nov. 16, 2010. Ocean City Zoning Administrator Blaine Smith and attorney Joe Moore, representing the property owners, were present to request a two-year extension of the contract.

According to Smith, the Cropper family has asked the commission for an additional extension because “they simply need more time in light of the economy.”

The property is now abandoned and the site plan calls for it to be developed into 94 multi-family residential units, which will be located on the bayside adjacent to the Route 50 Bridge. There will be 54 townhouses on the north portion of the lot. The southern portion of the lot will contain a five-story building with the 40 multi-family units.

“There hasn’t been any change in our regulation,” Smith said. “So it is still in compliance with our code divisions.”

Smith noted that the planning department has been meeting with the State Highway Administration to discuss a possible future alignment with the Route 50 Bridge’s connection to Ocean City.

“There’s nothing finalized but the current scenario would effect the southern portion of the property maybe by 50 feet,” Smith said.

When the site plan was originally approved a proposed bayside boardwalk was included, which was a selling point to the commission at the time, as well as Ocean City Development Corporation (OCDC) Executive Director Glenn Irwin.

In Wednesday night’s meeting Irwin was present and stated that the OCDC design committee has discussed the project and do support the two year extension.

“We did spend quite a bit of time reviewing the site plan,” Irwin said. “We like the site plan…we did want to note that in the original site plan in 2007 allowed for a 10-foot wide public boardwalk on the bayside which we really liked so with that we do support the request of the applicant.”

Commission member Lauren Taylor made the motion to extend the contract.

“I remember a very good plan for this site,” she said. “Given the economy and other problems, it is certainly clear that they need more time to get this done.”

Commission member Peck Miller second Taylor’s motion and the commission approved.

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