Close Menu
Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


Despite delays, Berlin sidewalk breaks ground

(April 30, 2015) After months of delays and almost comical levels of complications, construction finally began on a sidewalk connecting Stephen Decatur Park to downtown Berlin on Wednesday, April 22.
The project appeared to be close to reality as far back as July 2014, when easements from a holdout homeowner in the sidewalk’s path threw a wrench in the works.
During a public meeting in August, Water Resources/Public Works Director Jane Kreiter stressed the urgency of the project, calling it a safety issue await action by the Town Council.
“That’s a heavily traveled area, and if somebody is walking and there aren’t sidewalks then you’re sharing the road with all the cars that are coming and going,” she said at the time.
The easement issue was resolved soon after, and on Oct. 14 the council approved a $61,402.60 bid by Worth Construction to build the sidewalk, running from South Main Street down Tripoli Street to the park.
Construction was slated to start in November, when scheduling conflicts with the Maryland Department of the Environment, required to conduct an onsite preconstruction survey, pushed back the start date.
Then, poor weather conditions and an overbooked schedule on the part of the contractor again stalled the project.
“We had all the nasty snow and everything and then the ground was frozen and actually we switched contractors because [Worth] got backed up,” Kreiter told the Gazette last week. “We left on good terms, it’s just he’s been backed up from his other job. We’ll still do other things with him.”
This time, Berlin went with Newark, Del.-based A-Del Construction Co. Inc., and things appear to be running smoothly.
“It looks like they’re moving along pretty good already, so hopefully we don’t have any other delays,” Kreiter said. “It’s really been unbelievable up to this point.”
A-Del was contracted to complete the first phase of the sidewalk from South Main Street, down Tripoli, and stopping just before hitting a ditch on the way to the park. Kreiter said the town is exploring grant options for phase two of the project, completing the connection to Stephen Decatur Park.
“The plans have been drawn up, but because we’re putting pavers in and that sort of thing, it was pretty expensive,” Kreiter said. “It’s already designed, and certainly we’ll move forward with it as finances allow.”
The project is the first of many the town hopes to tackle during the coming year. A fiscal year 2016 budget draft released last week includes more than $170,000 in sidewalk and street repairs on Baker Street, Bryan Avenue, Cedar Avenue, Branch Street West, Grace Street, Flower Street, Maple Avenue and Tingle Road.