Facades repaired, awards handed out and business assisted by local nonprofit

(May 10, 2019) The Ocean City Development Corporation held its 10th annual meeting Wednesday to honor award recipients and recognize partners that have helped in the mission of “Revitalizing downtown Ocean City, one building at a time.”

Scheduled during the presentation, which occurred after press time at Shenanigan’s Irish Pub and Grille, Executive Director Glenn Irwin was to announce Reid Tingle as chairman of the OCDC Nominating Committee.

Planned recipients of Facade Improvement Project Awards were Vladica Stojanovic (300 14th Street), Steven and Laura Rosenblatt and architects the Becker Morgan Group (1202 Baltimore Avenue), and Patrick McLaughlin and contractor East Coast Contracting (2019 16th Street).

1202 Baltimore Avenue

The 1202 Baltimore Avenue home of Steven and Laura Rosenblatt, designed by architects from the Becker Morgan Group, were among those recognized under a facade improvement program of the Ocean City Development Corporation, which was highlighted on Wednesday night during the nonprofit’s 19th annual meeting, held at Shenanigan’s on 3rd Street.

Shotti’s Point Rhino Chaser Cafe on 607 Atlantic Avenue, and contractor Atlantic Contracting LLC, were scheduled to receive the Business Assistance Project Award, and Saylor Amos was to receive the annual Volunteer Award.

Additionally, OCDC Partnership Awards were to go to the Town of Ocean City Special Events Department and Frank Miller, Lisa Mitchell, Brenda Moore, David Rohman and Heather Wiles.

Board member elections were also scheduled to occur, with six people running for five slots, according to Irwin.

“The annual meeting is a great way to bring our OCDC members together once a year to celebrate our successes, as well as to recognize outstanding redevelopment projects and individuals that have assisted OCDC in our revitalization efforts,” he said. “I think this past year has been one of our busiest years, with lots of great projects to show for it.”

According to an advance copy of the event program, 2018 was another eventful year for the nonprofit, which formed in 2000. During that time, “many things have changed, but our focus has remained the same; revitalizing downtown Ocean City,” the program said.

Notable accomplishments slated to be highlighted during the program included:

• A façade improvement program that, since 2002, has renovated 220 older buildings using more than $6.5 million in funding. Currently, there are 10 façade improvement programs underway.

• Eleven projects during the last year were finished as part of a Green Building Initiatives Program that promotes energy efficient improvements, and seven additional such projects are underway. In total, 48 projects have been completed under the program thanks to more than $1 million in funding.

• The OCDC Business Assistance Program helped four new and expanding business make fixed terior improvements in the past year. Three additional projects are underway. To date, 26 projects have been completed using $1.5 million in funding.

• During the last year, OCDC received two grants totaling $175,000 from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. Since 2000, the organization has pulled in more than $3 million in state grants for downtown Ocean City improvements.

• The organizations continues to work with Town of Ocean City Special Events, OC Rec Boosters and other local nonprofits in providing free music at Sunset Park during Sunset Party Nights. Record attendance occurred during the events last year and eight such happenings are scheduled this year, on Thursdays throughout the summer.

• Last year, OCDC, Shore Craft Beer and the Town of Ocean City hosted the fourth craft beer festival at Sunset Park. The event included 12 craft breweries from the region. The 2015 festival reported 600 attendees, while last year’s event attendance grew to 1,400. The event this year is scheduled Oct. 26.

• The Boardwalk Committee continues to work on Boardwalk improvements by reviewing outdoor display permits, updating a business directory, and providing guidance on Boardwalk activities.

• To date, the nonprofit has panted 35 utility boxes through a partnership with Delmarva Power, the Art League of Ocean City, community sponsors and local artists.

• OCDC continues to use the state’s Strategic Demolition Grant program to replace substandard buildings with new, multi-use buildings to create new employment opportunities and provide new employee housing.

• The nonprofit also touted new construction downtown, including the Cambria Hotel at the Route 50 Bridge entrance, a 130-room hotel. This and other projects will boost the resort’s tax base and help create jobs. Also highlighted were the Beach Bum Inn on Baltimore Avenue and 3rd Street, expected to be completed this summer, and the groundbreaking for the expansion of the St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church at Baltimore Avenue and Talbot Street that occurred last week. That projected is expected to finish by August.

• Additional planned improvements include more painted utility boxes and the creation of off-the-Boardwalk business directories panels.

For more information on the Ocean City Development Corporation, visit www.ocdc.org

Josh Davis is an MDDC award-winning editor and reporter at the Bayside Gazette and Ocean City Today newspapers, covering Berlin and Ocean Pines, Maryland. He is the author of three novels, including 'Vanishing is the Last Art' (2012). He lives in Berlin.

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