Grant Helps Expand OC Bike Light Program

OCEAN CITY — Due to the success of the first-phase of the “Lights for Bikes” program, the Town of Ocean City is expanding the initiative thanks in part of a grant from the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore.

In March, the Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) began distribution bicycle lights free of charge to resort residents in an effort to improve bike safety on the town’s roadways. The project was initiated by the Coastal Resources Legislative Committee, or Green Team, last year, and the committee has spent much of the last year securing grant funding from various sources.

Now, just a month after the program was officially launched, the town is expanding the program after receiving positive feedback. As a result, Ocean City residents and visitors can bring their bicycles to any of the five fire stations throughout the resort to have the free lights installed.

City Councilman and Green Team chair Tony DeLuca said this week a grant from the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore has made the expansion of the bike-safety program possible.

“We are excited to have received a generous grant from the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore,” he said. “The generosity of our community has resulted in the purchase of nearly 500 free bicycle lights for our residents, our visitors and our J-1 students.”

DeLuca said the expanded lights for bikes program is part of a larger initiative to make the resort’s roadways safer for both bicycles and vehicles.

In addition to the grant from the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore, other funding for the free bike lights has come from the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association and the Maryland Department of Transportation’s State Highway Administration.

“It’s exciting to see new and emerging community programs develop each year,” said CFES President Erica Joseph. “Through grants such as these, we can help our area become a place where all can live, grow, learn and play, which is at the heart of our work at the Community Foundation.”

To further expand the safety initiative, bicycle lights will be made available at the City Hall gazebo on Wednesdays from May 16 to June 27 roughly from 10 a.m. to noon.

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.