BERLIN — As the Donaway Building on Pitt Street nears completion, the Town Council has charged Police Chief Arnold Downing with finding a solution that will make the street easier and safer for cars.
When cars line both sides of Pitt Street, the road becomes difficult to navigate, as there is barely enough room for two cars to pass each other.
At the end of this week’s mayor and council meeting, Mayor Gee Williams suggested it was time to make some changes to the parking rules and asked Downing for some suggestions. While he was clear that making the street one-way was not an option, changing the rules so that cars could only park on one side might be appropriate.
Given that the former warehouse will likely be used as retail space, Williams suggested that the change of use would clear the way for the council to decide how to handle parking there. One of the issues is that as the warehouse continues to undergo renovation, the space needed for trucks to load and unload must be kept intact.
Once the renovation is done and the stock moved from the building, the town might consider leaving a loading zone there or prohibiting parking on that side of the street altogether. Downing is expected to report his findings at the next meeting.
In other business:
• The council approved a tax abatement for Kwang Oak Park and Soon-AE as part of an incentive deal to have Burley Oak Brewery open in Berlin. During the property selection process, Brewery Owner Bryan Brushmiller said that as a start-up there would be a significant benefit for a property tax abatement.
As a result, the council then agreed to waive $4,000 in property taxes and that agreement paved the way for the brewery, which is expected to open in the coming weeks.
Rather than make the $4,000 abatement for this year, the council elected to break the amount in half, crediting property owners Kwang Oak Park and Soon-AE $2,000 for the next two years.
• In recognition of the Berlin Little League 10 and under All Stars’ capturing the state championship, the council approved a request to honor them with a parade at the opening of the Peach Festival in August.
The council also voted to donate $2,000 to the team to help cover its travel costs to Rhode Island for the next round in the Little League World Series. Expenses are estimated at $10,000 and the team has appealed to the town and local businesses for support.
“They’re getting good support from the community,” he said. “But I’m recommending as mayor that we help support the expenses for the last leg of this special journey.”
Anyone interested in making a donation to the Berlin Little League teams travel fund may do so at:
the Little Lambs Learning Center – 11227 Racetrack Road Ocean Pines, The Admiral Hotel – 9th Street and Baltimore Avenue Ocean City, or by mailing a check to Berlin Little League, P.O. Box 514, Berlin, MD 21811
All donations are tax deductible.