Ocean City Councilman Stirs Up Old Debate on Boardwalk Hardwood

first_imgThe full length of the Ocean City Boardwalk opened on in April after a winter of repairs that included rebuilding the section between Fifth and Sixth streets with southern yellow pine.Ocean City Council voted Thursday to spend $1,825,000 to continue a project to replace the entire Ocean City Boardwalk between Fifth Street and 12th Street.The project calls for using an existing stock of southern yellow pine as decking for the next phase of a multiyear project — from Sixth Street to Plaza Place (just north of Seventh Street). The first phase (between Fifth and Sixth streets) was completed in April.The city has long sought an alternative to pine for its boardwalk. The soft wood splits, cracks and exposes nails or screws after relatively short periods of time.As council considered the first reading of the spending and borrowing ordinance, Councilman Mike DeVlieger asked if the city administration would provide a cost estimate on the use of hardwood to complete the job.“It’s undeniable that it’s a better spend for your money,” DeVlieger said. “It’s more expensive now, but in the long run it’s a better buy.”The red line marks the project area for phase 2 of an Ocean City Boardwalk replacement project.He pointed out sections of existing hardwood decking that remain in relatively pristine condition after 30 years, while comparable sections of pine have replaced several times.“I think it’s foolish for us not to look at the big picture,” DeVlieger said.The pine planned for use in the next phase of the project has been stored in Ocean City since the settlement of a lawsuit with the Louis J. Grasmick Lumber Co. of Baltimore in 2009. The company was contracted to deliver a stock of the Brazilian hardwood ipé in 2007, and when the company failed to deliver a supply in timely fashion, City Council voted to break the contract and use pine instead.At the same time, the city was embroiled in a debate over the use of the rain forest hardwood. The city received tens of thousands of letters and emails protesting the decision.In the settlement, Ocean City had to make good on the purchase of both pine and ipe. The hardwood was never used and has since been put up for auction. Some of the pine stock was used for the first phase of the boardwalk project this winter.DeVlieger’s suggestion was greeted with wariness from his fellow council members — particularly from two-term incumbents Keith Hartzell and Scott Ping, who had lived through the first debate.Finance Director Frank Donato warned that the approval of the ordinance “puts us on a critical path to getting (the project) done in time in the off-season.”He said any sort of change to a formal bid process or the ordinance could prevent the project from getting done by next spring.DeVlieger said he didn’t want to see the project delayed, but he stood firm on his request for comparative costs.The current boardwalk project calls for a complete replacement of the substructure and decking of the Boardwalk’s busiest seven blocks.The appropriation approved Thursday is part of an ordinance that authorizes $1.9 million in spending and $1.8 million in borrowing. The appropriation also includes $80,000 for self-contained breathing apparatus for the Ocean City Fire Department. The first reading of the ordinance passed in a 6-0 vote (with Councilman Mike Allegretto not present) on Thursday. A public hearing and second reading of the ordinance is scheduled for June 12.A separate resolution approved Thursday authorizes advertising for bids from potential contractors for the job.The project will include reconfiguring the boardwalk ramp at Sixth Street, eliminating the north ramp and doubling the width of the south ramp to 24 feet. It also will include a redesign of the public restrooms there — with the building facing the ocean.Ocean City Business Administrator Mike Dattilo told council that the existing stock of southern yellow pine is thicker (three inches) and sturdier that the pine used on other sections of the boardwalk. He said the city is “optimistic” that it will hold up much better. He also reported that while the city has experimented with small sections of other materials, none has been suitable.***In other business, City Council approved a separate ordinance appropriating $160,000 from a capital improvement fund broken down as follows:$43,000 for police technology upgrades$43,000 for police equipment, including ATVs, weapons, bicycles and mobile computers$74,000 for Ocean City Fire Department and Ocean City Beach Patrol equipment including fire hose, fire foam, ATVs, personal watercraft with trailer and rescue boards.A second reading of the ordinance is scheduled for Jun 12.For complete documentation on all agenda items, see the City Council agenda packet.last_img read more

iGB Affiliate announces schedule for Nordic Affiliate Conference (NAC – Stockholm)

first_img Share Related Articles Shona ODonnell, iGBiGB Affiliate (Clarion Gaming) provider of news and events for industry affiliate marketing and player acquisition services, has announced the schedule for the upcoming Nordic Affiliate Conference (NAC), which will feature many of the biggest names in Scandinavian gaming.Among the highlights of the two-day conference, which will be held at Stockholm’s Grand Hôtel between 6-7 April, will be panels on advertising and affiliate standards in the Nordics, an M&A masterclass and an analyst’s view of regulation in the region.The confirmed speakers include Better Collective’s business development director Marc Frank Pedersen, Danish Online Gambling Association CEO Morten Rønde and XLMedia CEO Ory Weihs.iGaming Business’ head of operations, Shona ODonnell, commented: “Launching our first dedicated, Nordics-focused affiliate event with such a blockbuster cast of speakers is hugely exciting, and we look forward to welcoming everyone to Stockholm in April.“The Nordics have long set the standard for excellence in gaming, and with many of those leading this charge in attendance at NAC, the event will quickly become one of the most important dates on the calendar.”NAC will be hosted as a lounge-style event, enabling delegates to network in a more intimate and fluid way. The event will kick off with a welcome networking dinner on the evening of April 6. You can find out more, or register to attend the event here: http://po.st/wF6sEF. StumbleUpon Mobile Carrier Billing: Gambling operators could be losing up to 70% of revenues July 8, 2020 Submit Irish Greyhound Board orders Sportech Tote upgrade February 12, 2020 Share Stoiximan dominates first-ever Betarades Greek Bookmaker Awards January 24, 2020last_img read more