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Bay Mart proposal doesn’t pass smell test

August 19, 2016

We live on Terrace Road adjacent to the Bay Mart property. We want to ensure this property is developed in a way that accentuates and broadens the appeal of Rehoboth Beach.

We know that investment and growth are essential to thriving communities. We also believe sound investment should add to our community rather than exploit it. Sadly, the pending Bay Mart development very aggressively exploits our community and, as planned, puts people at risk.

Two issues in the proposed development plan don't even pass the smell test.

First, the developer proposes to close access to the property from Route 1 at the current traffic light.

This means that all traffic in and out of the property will be diverted to Terrace Road.

Imagine new homeowners (and guests and tenants) headed southbound on Route 1 who want to get to their homes. Under current plans they will be forced to make a U-turn on Route 1 at Robinson Drive and then make a quick right onto Terrace Road - a daunting proposition during summer traffic.

Woe to those new Bay Mart owners in need of emergency support. Fire trucks can't make the U-turn at Robinsons Drive and navigate the cart paths proposed for the development.

It makes zero sense to close a perfectly fine controlled intersection for access into and out of the property so that the developer can put in a few more homes.

Second, we understand that the plan includes 63 housing units with each unit having five to six bathrooms. We learned from the Aug. 12 planning commission meeting that the proposed development, alone, has the potential to overwhelm the capacity of the Newbold Square Pumping Station. Who is going to pay to remedy this issue?

We’ve been Rehoboth homeowners for more than a decade and seasonal residents for more than two. We’ve seen Rehoboth evolve in a number of positive ways and we applaud private investors working side-by-side with city officials who’ve helped make that happen.

We look forward to a thorough review by the city’s planning commission, hopeful that the developer and the community can make this property reflect the core values of Rehoboth Beach.

Philip Karsting
Michael Wroblewski
Rehoboth Beach

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