Judge rules against Rehoboth’s attempt to appeal BeachWalk

Case still in city’s hands
June 25, 2019

A Delaware Superior Court judge has struck down an attempt by the city of Rehoboth Beach to move the case of a proposed 63-unit condominium development to Delaware Supreme Court.

Judge E. Scott Bradley denied the city’s motion for a partial judgement in the case of Ocean Bay Mart, owner of the Rehoboth Beach Plaza shopping center property. Ocean Bay Mart owner Keith Monigle has proposed redeveloping the property as BeachWalk, a development consisting of 58 single-family homes and five apartment-style units.

Bradley had previously remanded the case to the city for further proceedings. The city’s motion asked Bradley to declare his decision a final judgement, allowing the city to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Judges are allowed to enter a final judgment in cases involving multiple claims. However, Bradley states this case involves only one claim, so he does not have that option. The matter is still pending before the commissioners.

BeachWalk was first submitted to the city in the summer of 2015. The project was proposed as a condominium, with all 63 units on one 7.75-acre parcel.

Building inspector Dam Molina had ruled that no more than one structure can be built on a lot. The city’s board of adjustment overruled him, saying the code Molina relied on for his ruling was ambiguous.

The project went to the planning commission for site-plan review, but the commission ruled BeachWalk was a major subdivision, requiring a subdivision plan. Monigle refused, and the case went to the city commissioners, who upheld the planners’ ruling. The case was appealed to Delaware Superior Court, where Bradley denied the city’s motion to dismiss the case and remanded the matter back to the commissioners.

During an April 8 special meeting, the commissioners unanimously voted to appeal Bradley’s decision and filed a motion for partial final judgement to facilitate an appeal.

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