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Service road stops short of 589
By Bob Lassahn

At the August 2 session of the Worcester County Commissioners several options regarding a service road on the south side of US 50 in the area of the Wal Mart and Home Depot shopping areas were considered.

George William Stephens, Jr. and Associates, consulting engineers for the project sought the commissioners’ direction regarding the extent of the first phase of construction. The firm recommended the commissioners proceed based upon an assumption that a Super Giant will not be built on a site west of the existing Home Depot and provided four separate options for the roadway.

The option selected by the commissioners would construct a service drive from Holly Grove Road west to the eastern property line of the site proposed for a new Super Giant, known as Ocean City Landing 2.  This option originally called for the road to extend to the western property line of the Super Giant site but the commissioners revised the scope downward, noting if they constructed it now they could not hold a future developer responsible for the cost.

The estimated cost of the project totaling about $1.7 million will provide a major rework of the intersection and installation of a traffic signal at Holly Grove Road. Kim Moses, Public Information officer for the Worcester County Commissioners, says that Wal Mart and Home Depot have already committed to about $81,000 as their share of the project costs. According to a timetable provided by the consultant construction on this phase of the service road could begin by November 2005.

Ruled out of the project for now is a connection of the service road at the intersection of US 50 and MD 589. This part of the project will be considered as development occurs west of the present Home Depot. Costs associated with that portion of the service drive will be the responsibility of the developers.

In its final configuration the service drive envisioned by the commissioners would parallel US 50 on the south side and extend from Seahawk Road on its western end to Holly Grove Road on the east. Although the commissioners have been somewhat adamant that they wanted the first phase of the service road to connect with MD 589, even to the extent where Commissioner Louis Gulyas suggested a cloverleaf intersection during a previous meeting on June 7, 2005, that consideration was pulled from the project for the present. The proposed Super Giant appears to be a dead issue and until development actually occurs on the parcels the service road will dead end on the west after Home Depot.

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Uploaded: 8/10/2005