Dorchester Street housing-rendering-2.png

A rendering shows the design of a planned three-and-a-half-story, 85-room seasonal housing building slated for a currently empty lot at 205 Dorchester St.

Three-story building will house 85 residents

A new three-and-a-half-story, 85-room building on Dorchester Street that aims to put a dent in the resort’s seasonal employee housing shortage is officially ready for construction.

At a meeting Tuesday, Ocean City planning commissioners unanimously approved a site plan for a project planned for a 5,000 square-foot lot at 205 Dorchester St. near the inlet. The empty property is nestled between two modest buildings and currently used for commercial parking.

The project will create housing for J-1 work and travel students, H-2B Nonimmigrant Temporary workers, American college students, and anyone else classified as a seasonal employee.

Harry How, the president of architect MAD Design Group, said the building will accommodate 85 people, who will be divided into rooms of eight to 16, with one manager’s room, on the top two floors. The bottom floor will have a dining area, two kitchens and small living areas. The residential floors will also include living spaces, which How said are bigger than the 250 square feet city code requires.

“We’ve gone above and beyond,” he said of the plans.

He said the floor will be open and accessible, with anybody able to get from one floor to the next.

Due to its classification as a rooming, boarding or lodging house, no parking was required for the project, as the residents are not expected to own cars. Members of the city’s Board of Zoning Appeals officially waived parking requirements at a meeting in November.

Planning commissioners were impressed with the project, and approved the site plan unanimously.

This story appears in the Sept 23, 2022 print edition of the OC Today.

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