Route 50 Bridge Repair Project Completed

OCEAN CITY — State Highway Administration (SHA) crews this week put the finishing touches on a major repair project on the Route 50 bridge in an effort to avoid a repeat of last summer’s major breakdown.

“The crews are finalizing the repairs stemming from the project last month to ensure the smooth operation of the draw span,” said SHA Public Information Officer Charlie Gischlar this week.

Around 3 p.m. last July 26, the drawbridge got stuck in the up position following a routine opening and closing. The malfunctioning bridge almost immediately caused heavy resort traffic on a busy Saturday afternoon in late July to back up along Route 50 and the dominoes toppled backward as motorists attempted to find alternative routes into the resort, essentially causing gridlock across much of northern Worcester County.

The bridge remained stuck in the open position for about five hours until the decision was made to hand-crank the bridge into the closed position to begin allowing vehicles to access the bridge in and out of the resort. SHA’s engineers determined the problem was caused by a cracked mount on the drawbridge’s drive shaft that would not allow the span to be lowered completely. The bridge was fixed temporarily and worked throughout the rest of the summer before the long-term fix that wrapped up this week.

In other news related to the bridges heading into and out of Ocean City, SHA crews on Monday will begin a significant milling and repaving project on Route 90 between the St. Martin’s River Bridge and the Assawoman Bay Bridge. The resurfacing work was to start earlier this week but was delayed by weather. It will now begin on Monday and is expected to be completed by next Thursday. The work will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

During the project, there will be single-lane closures guided by flaggers. SHA will use flaggers, variable message signs, cones, arrow panels and barrels to guide motorists through the work zone and some delays are expected. The intent is to improve safety and overall pavement conditions on Route 90 in both directions. The $225,000 repaving project will be performed by American Infrastructure MD, Inc. of Fallston.


SHA Updates City Council On Ongoing Projects; Route 90 Resurfacing Set For Next Week

OCEAN CITY — State Highway Administration (SHA) District Engineer Donnie Drewer and Assistant District Engineer Dallas Baker came before the Mayor and City Council to present an update on various topics, including Route 90 dualization, safety and improvement projects, the Route 50 Bridge, planned Route 90 repaving for next week and Coastal Highway repaving. According to Drewer, there is no … Continue reading

Resort Maintains Summer Bus Improvements A Reality

OCEAN CITY – The Town of Ocean City is reporting an enhanced bus service will hit Coastal Highway this summer. In the beginning of the year, the Transportation Commission focused on increasing the number of bus drivers by this summer season as the town has struggled with filling driver seats in the past several years. The commission went as far … Continue reading

Much To Decide In General Assembly’s Last 10 Days

BERLIN — With just one full week left in the Maryland General Assembly 2015 session, state lawmakers still have to resolve hundreds of pieces of legislation including several germane to the local area and the Eastern Shore. The General Assembly session closes with Sine Die on Monday, April 13, and there appears to be still more legislation to resolve then … Continue reading

Md. Senate Approves Hotel Tax Loophole Legislation

OCEAN CITY — In an issue near and dear to the resort area with its thousands of hotel and motel rooms, the state Senate this week passed legislation that would close a loophole that allows online booking companies to remit less sales tax to the state than their traditional counterparts. Senate Bill 190 would clarify the definition of “taxable price” … Continue reading

New OC Water Operation Clears Planning Hurdle

OCEAN CITY – Dead Freddies is in the clear to add the operation of paddle boats, stand up paddleboards and kayaks to the restaurant. On Tuesday evening, the Planning and Zoning Commission held a public hearing to consider granting a Conditional Use permit to OC Land Holdings, LLC, who owns all lots within the block between 63rd and 64th streets … Continue reading

Ocean City Council Endorses Craft Distillery Bill

OCEAN CITY — The Mayor and Council this week officially endorsed legislation in the Maryland General Assembly which, if approved, would create a Class 9 craft distillery license allowing eligible license holders to produce their own distilled spirits on their premises and conduct guided tours and tastings, for example. Senate Bill 523, introduced by Senator Jim Mathias, and House Bill … Continue reading

OC Off To Quieter Start On Crime Front Than Usual

OCEAN CITY – In the first month of the New Year, Ocean City Police Department data reflects overall crime down compared to the first month last year. Last week the Ocean City Police Commission reviewed crime statistics and Taser incidents for the month of January. According to the report, January’s total calls for service, including traffic stops, business checks and … Continue reading

North Ocean City Amusement Complex Plans To Add Mini-Golf Course, Laser Tag

OCEAN CITY – An amusement complex in north Ocean City looks to expand by adding a second miniature golf course and expanding the arcade building to include laser tag. A public hearing was held before the Planning and Zoning Commission on Tuesday to consider a conditional use permit for the expansion of an existing arcade and miniature golf complex between … Continue reading