No, no, no to park restaurant

November 22, 2022

As a resident of Delaware in Sussex County, I am directly opposed to La Vida Hospitality (or any restaurant group) building a restaurant in Cape Henlopen State Park, either on the dune or anywhere else in the park. The installation of a permanent building for the profit of a private commercial entity goes directly against the Warner Trust Act and DNREC’s stated mission. I do not believe there is room for interpretation as to what constitutes recreation in relation to the use of our parks’ natural, historic and cultural resources.

Indeed, there is nothing natural, historic or cultural about a restaurant structure and the trash, noise, visual obstruction, light pollution, truck and car traffic, and disruption to nature it will engender. Many people have moved from their congested, commercially sprawling cities to be closer to our state’s treasured natural areas contained within CHSP. The park is a major allure for the state – people travel from miles around to enjoy its unique, pristine nature which will permanently disappear with the addition of a restaurant. Furthermore, I cannot imagine whose interest a restaurant will serve besides those who stand to profit monetarily. Do DNREC and state representatives not know there are dozens upon dozens of restaurants in the region already? Have they not visited the area? What can they possibly be thinking? 

Until now, DNREC has successfully protected CHSP from commercial influences, blight and disruption as well as balanced the competing needs of many recreational users. I commend DNREC for this. However, I expect our elected representatives and state agencies to continue to adhere to their mission and represent the interests of park patrons and our community. I say no, no, no, no to a restaurant in Cape Henlopen State Park. 

Alix Stock
Rehoboth Beach


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