OCEAN CITY — Resort officials this week approved a request to add two additional 20-minute load and unload street parking spaces for patrons at a popular midtown surf shop after getting assurances from the business owner the proposal had the blessing of his neighbors.
The Mayor and Council had before them on Monday a request to allow two additional 20-minute load-unload parking spaces along 37th Street for the Endless Summer Surf Shop. Endless Summer already has three designated customer parking spaces on the street in front of the business and owner Joe “Salty” Selthoffer was requesting two more to bring the total number to five.
The Police Commission last month agreed to send a favorable recommendation to the full Mayor and Council for the request and it appeared to be on the fast track for approval on Monday. However, Councilman Wayne Hartman asked if there should be time limitations on the designated customer parking spaces for the surf shop coordinated with the business’s hours of operation.
“On this particular street, there are other businesses and many condos and so forth so making those spaces 20-minute load and unload spaces could be a detriment to the community because they are not needed for the business the entire time,” he said. “I think it might be best to designate these 20-minute spaces for certain hours when the business is open.”
Council Secretary Mary Knight pointed out Selthoffer was advised at the Police Commission level to get letters from his neighbors approving the change. Selthoffer was present on Monday and brought with him endorsement letters from the neighboring Castle in the Sand Hotel and Harborside Refrigeration along with endorsement from neighboring condos including the Condessa and Diamond Beach.
He said no one had voiced any objection to adding two additional designated customer parking spaces for the surf shop. Selthoffer said the opposite is actually true on some days. The condos along the street have more than enough parking for residents and visitors and aren’t concerned about the designated street spots for the surf shop.
“We have unanimous support from the neighbors,” he said. “When we don’t have parking for our customers, they’re parking in the condo spaces. That’s how much parking there is there. There is no one I’ve talked to that hasn’t given their blessing for this.”
Mayor Rick Meehan said limiting the spaces the business’s hours of operation only could cause confusion.
“We could end up with a situation where somebody gets towed and that’s the last thing we want,” he said. “That’s why we didn’t want to put a time limit on this.”