Pit-And-Pub Eyes Carryout Expansion; Rooftop Dining Area Included In Plans

OCEAN CITY — Resort planners last week signed off on a popular restaurant’s request to expand its carryout operation and add a rooftop dining area.

The Planning Commission had before it Dec. 15 a site plan review from the Pit-and-Pub restaurant on Coastal Highway at 28th Street. The plan calls for a 400-square-foot bump-out near the existing structure’s south end to expand the restaurant’s carryout operation. The site plan also provides for the relocation of 600 square feet of outdoor dining to a rooftop area of the establishment.

The current restaurant includes 3,300 square feet of enclosed area. The proposed addition of the designated carryout area would expand the total square footage to 3,700. Relocating 600 square feet of outdoor dining to the rooftop would not significantly expand the restaurant’s existing capacity.

The Pit-and-Pub currently holds a special exception for the amount of parking needed to accommodate the establishment’s guests. Under the code, the 400-square foot addition for the carryout operation would require four additional on-site parking spaces, but the town’s Board of Zoning Appeals in October granted a waiver for that parking requirement.

Satisfied the proposed site plan met the code requirements, the planning commission unanimously approved the site plan before them on Tuesday. Planning Commission member Joe Wilson lauded the business owners for embracing the carryout model during these trying times.

“It seems pretty straightforward to me,” he said. “COVID and carryout has changed things for a lot of businesses. I’m glad to see the Pit-and-Pub adjust and adapt. A large amount of their clientele lives right in that area.”

Planning Commissioner Joel Brous said the planned changes for the Pit-and-Pub were a welcome addition for that area of town and praised the owners for taking the initiative.

“It’s been there a long time,” he said. “I think it looks great and they do a great job.”

With so many restaurants facing closures amid the ongoing pandemic, Planning Commissioner Lauren Taylor said it was encouraging to see some local businesses taking the initiative to keep their operations afloat.

“I think this should be encouraged,” she said. “Any positive thing someone is willing to do right now is great for the city.”

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.